Police Chief Rick Hanson appeared before City Council Tuesday as the mayor and aldermen continued debate over the 2012 civic budget.

The budget for police is very much in flux right now as Council wrestles with trying to rein in spending.

Chief Hanson told Council, if Calgarians expect a growing city to be policed at the level they’ve enjoyed, more officers are needed.

“In 2012, we would be asking for 32 positions for growth,” said Hanson. “2013 would be an additional 40 positions.  And 2014 would be an additional 50 positions for a total of 122 positions over three years.  That’s just to maintain to the level of service proportionate to the demands caused by” (the) “growth” (of) “the city.”

The police chief added Calgarians are getting good value for their money.

“We’ve been asked if there’s an optimum cop to pop” (police to population) “ratio, and there really isn’t,” added Hanson. “The Calgary Police Service is able to police the third largest city in Canada with one of the lowest cop to pop ratios of the ten major cities.  In other words, we’re policing effectively and we’re doing it efficiently.”

Hanson said one police officer in Calgary now serves just over 560 citizens.