Clarence Valley dudded on cops

ALTHOUGH 336 new probationary constables graduate from the Goulburn Police Academy today, none of them are heading any further north than Newcastle.

Meanwhile, the announcement of three new officers for the Coffs/Clarence Local Area Command has received a lukewarm welcome from the NSW Police Association’s northern region executive officer Detective Sergeant Tony King.

“While any increase is welcome, the command runs from Urunga in the South to Iluka in the North, with 17 police stations. Three officers is woefully inadequate for this growing area.”

It is not clear at this stage if any of the three positions will be stationed in the Clarence Valley.

NSW Police Minister Michael Daley announced on Tuesday an additional 250 police positions across the state from January 2010.

While 43 of these positions will go to the northern region, along the coast from Gosford to the Queensland border, 93 per cent will go to areas outside the Coffs/Clarence command.

“This allocation is vastly below what is actually required,” Mr King said.

“The association finds it frustrating that we have not been consulted about the allocation of these new positions.”

The Examiner ran a story two weeks ago that said the Clarence Valley police force was running at 80 per cent strength due to extended sick or stress leave.

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