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Acting Police Commissioner seeks small increase in council tax

ACTING Police and Crime Commissioner, Ray Bisby is today (24th January) seeking to implement an increase in the policing part of council tax following the direction set by government.

The increase, which equates to 83p per month for people living in Band D properties, follows the Home Secretary’s announcement this week (22nd January) regarding funding for police forces for 2020/21.

With an ability for Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) to increase the policing part of council tax to £10 per year (or 83p per month) in 2020/21 (based on a Band D property), the government have made it clear that together with central funding, this provides enough resources for Chief Constables to deliver better police services.

Mr Bisby explains: “Earlier this month I launched a survey asking people to tell me their views about police funding without at that stage knowing the figures but I said that I would follow government guidance.

“Now that the announcement has come through, I am proposing a £10 per year increase to maximise police funding locally, and ensure we have resources needed to improve police services.

“While this is good news for Cambridgeshire, the funding earmarked for our county is dependent on an additional 62 officers being recruited by March 2021 in accordance with the government’s 20,000 new officer programme.

“With on-going recruitment, it’s vital that new and existing officers have access to training, resources, and more time to support communities to prevent crimes from happening in the first place.”

The funding means we can now support the existing 1,500 officers in Cambridgeshire by strengthening the infrastructure that allows them to effectively carry out their duties.

Mr Bisby continues: “I therefore propose to increase council tax by £10 per year to ensure the PCC elected by the public in May has the resources they need in place to support the Chief Constable to deliver a better policing service.

Chief Constable Nick Dean said: “Policing neighbourhoods is at the very core of everything we do, and any investment we can make to strengthen our ability to do this is welcomed.

“With an ever-growing demand on policing, we remain committed to building trust and confidence in our communities, in the most efficient and effective way possible.”

The Acting Commissioner would like to thank all those who have completed his survey to date which closes at 5pm on Monday 27th January.