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Would You Pay More for Policing in Cheshire? Have Your Say

Published: 7th January 2020 12:47

Cheshire's police and crime commissioner is asking residents and businesses for their views on how much council tax they pay towards local policing. 

PCC David Keane has today (Tuesday 7 January) launched an online consultation to ask local people if they would be willing to support up to a maximum of £2 per month increase in the policing precept for the average band D household.

David KeanePCC David Keane invites you to have your say on the cost of policing in Cheshire.


There will also be a number of roadshows held across Cheshire where residents can talk to the commissioner directly about their views on the precept and complete the consultation survey face-to-face.

He said: "Over the last decade police funding has been subject to stringent funding cuts from central Government. This has seen the policing budget in Cheshire decrease in real-terms year-on-year since 2010. In a decade where demand on policing has increased by one third, and become increasingly complex, the government's programme of austerity has meant that Cheshire has suffered a big decrease in police officers, support staff posts and other essential resources as we've struggled with more than £60 million of real term cuts.

"Whilst imposing cuts nationally, central government has dictated the shift of the funding burden onto local residents, requiring commissioners to consult on raising the policing element of council tax. Whilst I believe that policing should be funded from government as the first responsibility of the state is keeping its people safe, I promised to protect our public and our public services and to carefully listen to the views of local residents.

"Historically, this annual consultation is set around the government's Provisional Police Funding Settlement which local police services usually receive in December. Due to the late general election in 2019, police services are yet to receive their Provisional Funding Settlement for 2020/21 so we have to work on an assumption of the continuance of a flat-cash settlement from Government with no additional funding to support additional demand or to cover pay and price inflation. The chief constable has advised me to consult with Cheshire residents on a precept that enables him to deliver a police service which keeps our communities safe.

"At £200.44, the police element of band D council tax in Cheshire is currently the ninth lowest in the country. And thanks to the support of local residents in last year's policing precept, we have delivered on our promise of locally recruiting 43 officers in the last nine months.

"We are also expecting to see some of the police officer posts, of the circa 21,000 that have been lost over the last decade, start to be replaced by the government funded national uplift programme. Cheshire are expecting to see 30 of these officers this year which will start to help us reverse the effects of austerity on policing but while these officers may be funded, there appears no protection for the current budget and for current officer numbers in Cheshire to be maintained.

"Therefore, the chief constable and I are asking residents and businesses in Cheshire if they are willing to support up to an extra £2 per month increase for the average band D household. This will enable the chief constable to invest in a number of areas which are operational threats for Cheshire Police including county lines, major crime and modern slavery and human trafficking."

Public consultation events

Unfortunately there will not be an event in Neston, but you can attend any of the following:

Chester - Tesco, Frodsham Square, Thursday 9 January, 1pm-3pm

Runcorn - Runcorn Shopping City, Friday 10 January, 10am-12noon

Widnes - Morrisons, Green Oaks Way, Friday 10 January, 1pm-3pm

Warrington - Cockhedge Shopping Centre, Thursday 16 January, 1pm-3pm

Macclesfield - Sainsbury's, Cumberland Street, Friday 17 January, 10am-12noon

Middlewich - Morrisons, Newton Bank, Friday 17 January, 2pm-4pm

Crewe - Tesco, Vernon Way, Thursday 23 January, 1pm-3pm

Ellesmere Port - The Market, Friday 24 January, 10am-12noon

Northwich - Asda, Leicester Street, Friday 24 January, 2pm-4pm

You can also give your views by completing a survey on the Cheshire PCC website here.

The consultation closes at midnight on Sunday 26 January 2020.

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At 13:55 on 8th January 2020, Denno commented:

If we get rid of the PCC and that level of staff expense that cost us £380,000 in trying and failing to get rid of a perfectly good chief constable who is now the second highest paid chief constable in the UK there would be no need to ask for more money.
At 19:54 on 9th January 2020, undefined commented:
If Central Government gave a decent amount to the PCC and the Police budgets there would be no need for the already stretched tax payer to cough up yet again!! It is not the fault of the PCC but instead of asking for more money he should be exposing the fact the central Government are not giving enough. The extra £2 is just a portion of the rise we will get in our council tax and it all mounts up. Our council tax is already astronomical!!. If Denno above thinks the the previous Chief Constable was 'perfectly good' well I certainly do not agree! Thank goodness we do now have an excellent Chief Constable in Mr Martland. Also David Keane has cost a lot less than his predeccesor Mr Dwyer who is now trying to get in again, heaven forbid!
John Cartlidge
At 20:52 on 9th January 2020, John Cartlidge commented:
I suggested £50 extra per household per annum in exchange for genuine police presence - i.e. warranted officers on hand in Neston with a local contact number. I can dream...
At 20:02 on 10th January 2020, BHFL commented:
No. Not willing to pay any more. Council tax is already too much for some people to pay.
At 22:49 on 10th January 2020, Denno commented:

Good point BHFL.Last year the CT went up by a massive 5.8% which means that if increases continue at that pace then our CT will double in less than 12.5 years i.e. by 2032/33 and not that far away.Goodness knows how pensioners and low income groups will afford it. CWaC Councillors please take note before setting the new CT in February.
At 09:03 on 15th January 2020, Bob commented:
What Police?
No, I would not pay any more. Rates already far too high and we don't seem to get much for what we pay!
At 20:55 on 5th February 2020, BHFL commented:
So the Police want more money from Council Tax, the Fire and Rescue folk want more money, the Town Council want more money and the Council tax goes on going up by a large percentage without all those additional precepts. They want more and more money yet there are masses of new homes and flats being squeezed into our area and all of them are already adding their new Council Taxes into CWAC's coffers. The people in our society who cannot afford a house to buy have to rent their properties and in addition to paying rent and all bills they have to pay the huge Council Tax too. Numerous people are paying two or three thousand a year, of these, numerous people are on fixed incomes with minimal wage rises that cant keep pace with these rises. Many pensioners are on fixed incomes and even those with investments are getting very poor returns. It should not be a question of whether or not we need more police. I am sure we would all love to have more police and the ability to speak to a person who knows Neston rather than Winsford when we phone for help or to report a crime, but there is a limit to money. Sorry Police, you should cut your cloth accordingly and appeal to Boris not the local homeowners or renters.
At 21:26 on 5th February 2020, Bob commented:
No, I don't want to pay any more tax. We never see a policeman and when calling at the station(?) you can't find a policeman. Fist move is to get rid of the PPC and his staff. We don't need them.
I am retired and now on a fixed income so any rise in tax cuts into my total to live. No more it is already too much to pay.
At 22:16 on 5th February 2020, Denno commented:

Well said Bob from a fellow sufferer.

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