Police and Crime Commissioner launches Police Budget Consultation
*The police budget consultation has now closed. Thank you to those who took part. The results will be published on our website in due course*
Norfolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Giles Orpen-Smellie has launched his Police Budget Consultation today. Residents of Norfolk are being asked if the PCC should increase the police precept of council tax for the coming year.
Last year, the PCC toured Norfolk talking to people about policing in their communities. During the two-week consultation, Giles Orpen-Smellie will continue visiting libraries and community centres to discuss the challenges Norfolk Constabulary face in a financially challenging environment.
The consultation is a legal requirement that the PCC must carry out each year.
Having discussed funding with the Chief Constable Paul Sanford, Giles is seeking the community’s support for a precept rise of 5.2%.
Based on a 5.2% increase, a Band D property would pay an extra £14.94 or 29 pence per week and a Band B property would pay £11.62 a year or 22 pence a week.
In the published information Giles said: “Resources are limited, demand for policing services is growing and policing cannot compromise. The policing family is bigger than the officers on the front line – it takes a range of different services to support them, including police staff, members of the Special Constabulary and other vital volunteers.
“Significant savings have already been made but, put simply the police need the tools to do their job and if we are to maintain the same level of service as last year those working behind the scenes need to be funded.
“I have discussed with the Chief Constable every possibility to save money across current staffing capability and activity and I can assure you that the constabulary are as efficient in using your money as they possibly can be.”
“I recognise that no-one likes to pay more tax but the choice before us, sadly, is either to pay a little more or to risk reducing the policing service available to the public.”
Paul Sanford, Chief Constable of Norfolk Constabulary said: “Our detectives now investigate more rape and sexual offences than any other crime with our public protection unit teams working tirelessly to manage offenders within our community.
“Policing has always been the service of first and last resort. Our duty is to serve our communities to the best of our abilities, but at the moment this means handling situations outside the criminal realm, which we are feeling the impact of, now more than ever.
“When other agencies struggle to deliver their own service, we end up filling the gaps.
“While we will continue to work hard to maintain our service, you can trust, that we are only seeking an increase because we really feel it’s necessary.”
The consultation will run until 5pm, Monday 16 January.
Printed copies of the survey and consultation documents are also available and can be requested by contacting the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Norfolk (OPCCN) in the following ways:
Post: OPCCN, Jubilee House, Building 7, Falconers Chase, Wymondham, NR18 0WW
Telephone: 01953 424455