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The mayors of three communities in northwestern Ontario say they need help from the province to deal with rising policing costs.

The mayors of Sioux Lookout, Kenora and Pickle Lake formed a coalition last year in an effort to reduce what they say are disproportionately high policing costs in their communities.

They say calls for service in their small communities have grown due to worsening homelessness and drug addiction issues in northern Ontario.

Members of the group met today with solicitor general Michael Kerzner but Sioux Lookout Mayor Doug Lawrance says the province did not offer an immediate solution to the issue.

A spokesperson for Kerzner says the meeting was “productive” and the government will “continue to engage” with the mayors to strengthen police services in their communities.

The mayors’ coalition says the cost for policing in their communities – provided by Ontario Provincial Police – is approximately three times higher than the $300 per household median cost for municipalities in Ontario.