Cop bill over climate change protest
Hundreds of thousands of dollars will be spent on overtime for police officers who worked during week-long climate change protests in Melbourne
Victoria Police Commander Tim Hansen said on Sunday the force was still totalling the cost of the Extinction Rebellion protests in the city, but overtime was already high.
"The overtime budget is in the hundreds of thousands already... 16,000 patrol hours have been deployed," he told reporters on Sunday, adding that 111 people had been arrested.
"It has had a huge impact on our resourcing out in the regions and out in the suburbs."
Commander Hansen slammed the organisers for keeping police in the dark about their movements during the "spring rebellion", which meant officers had to be taken off other duties.
The commander ruled out making the protesters pay for the costs incurred during their activities, as that would only be applicable if there is a "level of commerciality".
"This is clearly a public community protest in public space. We are resourced and financed to deploy in those circumstances," he said.
The Extinction Rebellion movement held protests from Monday to Sunday including marches and other protests aimed at blocking traffic across the country.
Among its requests, the movement called on governments to "tell the truth" about climate change by declaring a climate and ecological emergency.
© AAP 2019