The PCC elections are only 61 days away
September 22, 2012 1 Comment
At present, there are 43 police authorities in England and Wales that are responsible for the oversight of policing. They are made up of a mix of local elected councillors and independent members. Police authorities are the lawful employers of the police staff.
The 2011 Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act created the new role of Police and Crime Commissioner – a single elected person to replace each of the police authorities. Each Commissioner will be scrutinised by a new local government committee called the Police and Crime Panel.
Once elected the new Commissioners will:
Employ police staff
Set the police precept as part of local council tax
Decide the policing plan for each police force
Hold the chief constable to account
Commission policing services from the chief constable, or other providers
Work in partnership with other criminal justice agencies
The Coalition Government is cutting police budgets by 20%. By the end of the current CSR period this will mean the loss of 16,000 (approx 500 in Essex) police staff jobs and 2000 (approx 100 in Essex) PCSO posts – roughly 20% of the police staff establishment. Alongside these staffing cuts, Essex Police has been forced to close police stations and public enquiry desks as a result of inadequate funding from Government.
Val Morris-Cook is Labour’s PCC candidate in Essex.