The Canadian Taxpayers Federation, a citizens advocacy group aimed at lowering taxes, claims it accessed documents showing that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) spent CA$56,384 on security costs for the British royals from Nov. 18, 2019 to Jan. 19, 2020. The bottom line number in Canada translates to over $40,000 in U.S. dollars, according to the group’s report.
Aaron Wudrick, federal director for the advocacy group, said the security bill “could have easily turned into millions” had Meghan and Harry remained on Vancouver Island, where they were reportedly staying before uprooting to Los Angeles, Calif.
Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex visit District 6 Museum on Sep. 23, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa.
“More than $50,000 is nothing to sneeze at, especially when you consider the fact that this is taxpayers’ money covering bills for one of the most famous and wealthy couples in the world,” Wudrick said.
The group reported that the bill does not show the salaries of the officers on duty for the couple. It “only” shows the costs relating to “overtime, travel, meals, incidentals and accommodations,” the report said.
A rep for Meghan and Harry did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment.
Meghan and Harry’s security costs were a hot topic of debate during their stay in Canada. Vancouver Island appeared to be the first location the Duke and Duchess of Sussex chose after announcing they would be stepping down as senior members of the royal family and splitting their time between the United Kingdom and North America.
Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex attend The Endeavour Fund Awards at Mansion House on March 05, 2020 in London, England.
Back in January, more than 80,000 Canadians signed an online petition demanding that Meghan and Harry pay for their own security while living there.
Shortly after, Canadian officials announced that the government would no longer provide security after March, when the couple made their official transition from being active members of the royal family, according to reports.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex choosing to relocate to Canada on a part-time basis presented our government with a unique and unprecedented set of circumstances,” Public Safety Minister Bill Blair said. “The RCMP has been engaged with officials in the U.K. from the very beginning regarding security considerations.”
Meghan, Duchess of Sussex attends the annual Remembrance Sunday memorial at The Cenotaph on November 10, 2019 in London, England.
He told the CBC that, since Harry and Meghan are currently “Internationally Protected Persons,” the government was obligated to provide them security on an “as-needed basis.”
Meghan and Harry’s security bill drama escalated once they settled in Los Angeles. President Trump welcomed the couple via Twitter but made sure to note that the U.S. won’t be footing the bill to keep them safe.
Meghan and Harry confirmed they never had plans to ask for help in covering their personal security in the U.S.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have no plans to ask the U.S. government for security resources,” a spokesperson for Meghan and Harry told Fox News. “Privately funded security arrangements have been made.”