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New contracts for Cobourg Police chief, deputy

By Valerie MacDonald, Northumberland Today

Cobourg Police Chief Kai Liu. VALERIE MACDONALD Northumberland Today

Cobourg Police Chief Kai Liu. VALERIE MACDONALD Northumberland Today

COBOURG -- Top cops in the Cobourg Police Service have had their contracts renewed for four and five years, respectively.

"With 31 years of policing, I still believe I am the luckiest person because I love what I do. I wake up each morning excited like a recruit as I head into the police station," Chief Kai Liu said in an interview after the announcement by the Police Services Board.

He was hired in 2012 after working for a number of police services including Ottawa.

The chief said he and his wife "call Cobourg home."

Liu's new contract expires in September 2021.

The other contract renewal, that for Deputy Chief Paul VandeGraaf, expires in October 2022.

"As the board enters into a new-three year business plan, with Deputy VandeGraaf as my partner, I am confident that we will continue to meet and exceed the expectations of our community," the chief is quoted as stating in a media release.

Police board chair Bryan Baxter explained the reason for the contract renewals in the same release.

"Under Chief Liu's leadership the board has witnessed a significant change in the police service's culture of community engagement and response to community concerns. As a united senior management team, the chief and deputy have our members more engaged with the community we serve. Our police service is at the forefront of mentoring our youths through programs like the Youth in Policing Initiative (YIPI), our detectives are working collaboratively with community partners to combat violence against women and enhance support for victims of crime, and our frontline officers are highly visible. The board extended the two employment contracts to ensure we keep the momentum of change and improvements moving forward. With these contract renewals the Board's long term succession plan for dynamic leadership appears very bright."

Liu's contact was set to expire last month. The board meeting decision to extend it took place that same month.