Waterloo Regional Police are staring down the biggest deficit in their 40-year history, a  $1.1 million shortfall.

The main reason for the deficit is overtime, which totalled over $800,000, 60 per cent over the year-to-date budget.

WRPS Director of Finance, Joe Steiner says the deficit could increase by year’s end if overtime costs continue to climb.

Police Board Chair, Tom Galloway says the force may have to dip into its reserves of about $2.5 million.

“This is certainly something that many police services right across the country are dealing with. It really amounts to trying to respond to the increased demand for service.” said Police Chief Matt Torigian.

Torigian tells 570 News they are starting to see the benefits of new officers hired last year. It takes them about a year from hire to the end of training to get them out on the road by themselves.