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TIMMINS - Timmins Police Service stepped up its formality just a bit during the regular monthly meeting of the police services board this week. “We have been in contact with the Government of Canada and the Canadian Heraldic Authority to have a coat-of-arms designed for the Timmins Police Service,” Police Chief John Gauthier said at the meeting on Thursday. Gauthier said the idea for a formal coat-of-arms originated with retired police chief Richard Laperrière several years ago, and even though the chief retired five years ago, the work continued. “With much determination and assistance from Kate Cantin, our corporate communications coordinator, we are happy to reveal the finished product here this afternoon,” said Gauthier. Interim communications coordinator Marc Depatie described the new coat of arms as a “striking piece of artwork” and said it was the result of several years of work. He said the herald depicts Northern Ontario wildlife as symbolized through the two owls, which also reflects the “sage and wisdom-oriented approach to policing.” The owls are also wearing British style “bobby” police hats which were part of the police regalia in 1912, the year the Timmins Police Service was incorporated under the leadership of Chief James P. Ryan. The new herald was created by armorial artist Eva Pilar-Cass, of Sault Ste. Marie, who is well known for creating such symbols. The top of the herald features a porcupine, in reference to the Porcupine Camp mining district. The porcupine is shown holding an eagle feather, which is representative of the strong relationship that exists with the Aboriginal population, said Depatie. The same time as the coat-of-arms was unveiled, a new spruced-up version of the Timmins Police badge was revealed. Similar to the city’s official symbol, it features a crossed prospector’s hammer and miner’s sledge hammer with a glittering gold nugget, surrounded by a wreath of golden maple leaves. It is topped by a proper royal crown. “This piece of artwork is going to be standard by which we recognize our past but embrace the future,” Depatie said. No decision has been made as yet where the new coat of arms will be featured in the Timmins Police building, although it is likely to replace the large existing police emblem that is now featured in the atrium of the public lobby. There is also the possibility the symbol will be transferred to a new flag for the police building and for police related ceremonial events. Chief Gauthier said he was pleased with the new herald saying it was indeed a unique piece of artwork. Timmins mayor and police board chairman Steve Black was also pleased with the final product. “It has been a long process, but obviously I think they’ve done a great job capturing the history of not just the region but the Timmins Police as well,” said Black, who offered congratulations to the artist and the senior officers for their support.