IT WAS a long and rocky road to get there but the official honours have been unveiled at the new state-of-the-art Moree Police Station.
The $18 million Barwon Command headquarters boasts the latest crime-fighting technology for more than 70 staff.
And while the new police base has been in operation since officers moved in in June last year, it was the state’s top cop and police minister who did the official duties yesterday morning, unveiling a plaque to commemorate the occasion.
Commissioner Andrew Scipione said it was a relief to drive into town and see the two-story complex which replaced the outdated 53-year-old station which was situated next door.
“I drove in expecting to see the old building and let’s just say it was a welcoming change,” he said.
“While we do have this state of the art building the community does not measure us by the quality of our address, but by how we protect you, serve you and help you and with this new facility, officers are all under the same roof to do so.”
Commissioner Scipione told the gathering, made up of local police, Western Region officers and the local community, the station was a place for the community, for victims to feel safe speaking with officers.
“The focus is now on the people who own this building – the community,” he said.
“I’ve met some of the officers working out of this new building and I know they are up to the challenge of fighting crime alongside the community to help reduce crime and the fear of it.”
The opening signals a new era in fighting crime in the Barwon Command with all police sectors housed under the one roof which also boasts conference rooms, an underground secure car park and a gym.
Police Minister Mike Gallacher said it was a long road to developing the new station, but it was worth waiting for.
“It is an honour to be standing in this building officially opening it today. I remember every time I used to see Moree officer Robert Dunn he would get me and ask what was happening with the Moree station,” he said.
“It seemed there was always problems holding the development up and at one stage it looked like it would never happen, but here we are today.”
The old station was demolished to make way for a police compound attached to the new station.