Residents in Cleveland are being given their say about how much they are willing to pay for policing in their council tax.
The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner today launched their annual survey on the policing ‘precept’ – the amount paid towards policing, crime-reduction schemes and victim services.
The Government confirmed yesterday (Thursday 17 December) that Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) will have the ability to increase precept by up to £15 a year for a Band D property.
In Cleveland, such an increase would provide maximum protection for existing levels of service, but would still require Cleveland Police to make efficiency savings. A smaller increase would require more significant savings to be made and may result in a reduction of existing service levels.
Considering the challenging financial circumstances facing policing and the wider impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, respondents will be asked to consider how affordable a maximum increase would be for their household.
Acting PCC Lisa Oldroyd said: “We completely recognise the impact coronavirus has had on individuals and communities this year, with people losing their jobs and businesses struggling to cope with the loss of revenue.
“As key workers, Cleveland Police’s officers, staff and volunteers faced their own challenges during the pandemic – enforcing the new regulations alongside their regular duties with professionalism and compassion.
“It is extremely important that we seek the views of residents about how much they are willing to pay towards policing in their area, whilst recognising the investment the force needs to continue their journey of improvement.”
This year residents will also be asked to provide their views on how the Commissioner should spend their £2.4m budget for programmes to reduce offending and support vulnerable victims of abuse, including those affected by sexual violence and domestic abuse.
Last year’s precept increase of £10 raised an additional £1.6m, which helped support the appointment of over 100 additional police officers to Cleveland Police during 2020/21.
Mrs Oldroyd will make a precept proposal to Cleveland Police and Crime Panel in the New Year, once the consultation concluded.
The 2021-22 survey will be open until Friday 15 January 2021.Complete the 2021-22 precept consultation