Feb 132015

birm council house


Panel reviews and accepts the 2015-16 policing precept

The West Midlands Police and Crime Panel has accepted the 1.99% increase to the policing precept proposed by the Police and Crime Commissioner, David Jamieson.

The Panel, that has the power to veto the proposal, accepted the increase after a detailed question and answer session with the Police and Crime Commissioner on 2nd February.

The Panel’s report has been published on the Panel website http://westmidlandspcp.co.uk/publications/

The report has a number of recommendations for the Police and Crime Commissioner, including providing more information to residents on what the additional money collected through the precept would be used for and greater clarity on impact of the current police recruitment drive on officer and staff numbers.

Commenting on the police budget consultation, the Panel suggested that to increase public participation next year he might work alongside the district council budget consultation exercises and use their social media channels.

The precept is the part of the council tax that pays for policing. The Police and Crime Commissioner must present his proposals each year to the Police and Crime Panel.

The Panel, made up of councillors from the 7 West Midlands local councils and two independent members, must review the proposal and agree, made recommendations, or veto the Commissioner’s proposal.

The Panel meeting was webcast and you can watch the Panel’s debate on the police budget and precept here http://bit.ly/1DXuJ2R

Panel reviews changes to the Police and Crime Plan

The Police and Crime Plan is an important document in which the Police and Crime Commissioner sets out his priorities. The Plan provides a direct means though which the Panel can hold the Commissioner to account and scrutinise his work. The Commissioner must consult the Panel on any changes he wants make to the Plan.

The Panel questioned the Police and Crime Commissioner on changes to the Plan on 2nd February.  The Panel’s report has now been published on http://westmidlandspcp.co.uk/publications/

Whilst recognising the work that has gone into reshaping this document the Panel suggested several areas for the Commissioner to consider that would ensure the Plan reflected current priorities across the West Midlands and support the existing work being undertaken by West Midlands Police and partner organisations to reduce crime and improve community safety.

The Panel asked for more details on the work of the force to address “hidden crimes” including how improvements will be achieved,  recognition of the new statutory duties under the Prevent Strategy, tackling alcohol related crimes, and more details on targets and baselines for the objectives set out in the Plan  to enable the public and the panel to track and judge the commissioner’s success.

You can watch the Panel’s debate on changes to the Police and Crime Plan here http://bit.ly/1IKkB44