The Nelson Police Department is governed by the Nelson Police Board under the authority of the British Columbia Police Act. The Police Board, which meets monthly, consists of the Mayor and five other representative citizens of the community. The Chief Constable is directly responsible to the Police Board and thereby the citizens of Nelson.
The Department is divided into two main branches, Operations and Support Services. The Chief Constable oversees and commands both branches.
The Operations branch includes two patrol Platoons, Traffic Enforcement, Beat personnel, and the General Investigation Section (G.I.S.).
The Support Services branch includes Court Liaison, the Public Information Counter, Dispatcher/Guards, the Detention Facility, the Crime Prevention Office, Victim Services and Reserves.
The Department has a deployable strength of twenty members, eight support staff, nine reserve officers and two victim service workers.
The General Investigation Section is staffed by two Detective/Constables. The Crime Prevention Office is staffed by a Sergeant who is responsible for community services and crime prevention, in addition to providing patrol support.
The Nelson Police Department currently has three officers seconded to an integrated provincial traffic unit – the Kootenay Integrated Road Safety Unit (K-IRSU). Blended with members of the RCMP, this unit is mandated to conduct proactive traffic enforcement by targeting aggressive driving behaviors, reducing alcohol related crashes and encouraging the use of seatbelts throughout the Kootenay/Boundary region.