Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger has today (Thursday 23 January) launched his public consultation on funding for policing and community safety in Cleveland.
Mr Coppinger is seeking the views of Cleveland residents on increasing the amount they pay for policing in their council tax, a payment known as the policing precept.
Yesterday the government announced their financial settlement for policing. Combined with a small precept increase, this government funding will allow Cleveland Police to recruitment an additional 127 officers over the next year.
Mr Coppinger is recommending an increase of £10 per year for a Band D property – an increase of 3.99% - to allow the impact of this investment to be realised.
Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger said: “I have campaigned for a reversal to the cuts to policing in Cleveland for a number of years, so I welcome news that an investment is being made.
“The priority over the next few months is to ensure 2020 marks a turning point for Cleveland Police and to make sure they implement rapid improvements so residents get the policing service they need.
“In the current financial climate it is simply not an option to maintain the previous level of precept, if we want to see Cleveland Police recruit extra officers and make the significant improvements they need to.
“I’ve been encouraged by the green shoots of progress the Force has started to make, including the launch of a new Vulnerability Strategy and the recruitment of new senior leaders, but there still is a long way to go.
“Failing to increase the precept at this crucial moment would result in cuts to services and the progress we have seen in recent months by the Force being set back.
“While it is never a decision I take lightly, a precept increase will allow Cleveland Police to maintain its current momentum and become a police service the people of Cleveland can be proud of.”
As the government’s settlement was delayed, the consultation will only run for a short period, as a proposal is due to be presented to the Police and Crime Panel on Tuesday 4 February.
Posted on Thursday 23rd January 2020