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Norfolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner Lorne Green to announce his policing budget proposals for 2018/19

PUBLISHED: 08:55 06 February 2018 | UPDATED: 08:55 06 February 2018

Police officers on the beat in Norfolk. PIC: Ian Burt.

Police officers on the beat in Norfolk. PIC: Ian Burt.

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Norfolk’s police and crime commissioner will today unveil his proposals for the 2018/19 policing budget.

Norfolk Police and Crime Commisssioner Lorne Green.
Picture: ANTONY KELLYNorfolk Police and Crime Commisssioner Lorne Green. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Lorne Green will present his budget plan, which will include how much Norfolk’s taxpayers will contribute to funding their policing service through council tax, to the Police and Crime Panel (PCP) at a meeting at County Hall from 10am.

The PCP, which is made up of county councillors and independent members, will scrutinise the proposed budget plans, which will include the PCC’s decision on whether to freeze or increase the policing element of council tax.

A public consultation was run before Christmas to help inform the PCC’s budget decision.

Mr Green said: “This is one of the most important decisions for which police and crime commissioners are responsible and, while the buck does ultimately stop with me, with 40pc of our policing budget coming from taxpayers’ pockets, I felt it vital that all Norfolk residents had the opportunity to have their say.”

The two primary options upon which the PCC consulted were a policing precept freeze at last year’s level or an increase of up to 2pc, which was the maximum increase permitted under the central government cap in place at the time of the consultation launch.

Having lobbied central government to look again at police funding and allow PCCs more flexibility to set budgets in response to financial challenges and local policing need, the PCC also consulted on a number of supplementary options (up to a 12pc increase) in order to gather public opinion and help inform his budget decision should that maximum cap be raised.

Three days before the PCC’s consultation closed, the Policing Minister announced that the cap would be raised with the maximum increase permitted in 2018/19 being £12 per household. That equates to a maximum 5.5pc increase on a Band D property in Norfolk.

Mr Green said: “It’s down to me to ensure our police deliver an efficient and effective service and have the resources they need to keep our communities safe.

“The chief constable spelt out very clearly what the different consultation options, including a freeze at last year’s levels, would mean for Norfolk’s policing service.

“I have listened to the chief constable, and I’ve listened to what Norfolk residents think, what they want and expect from their policing service and what they are prepared to pay. It’s my job, now, to weigh up all the information and make a decision.”

Earlier this year it was confirmed the police element of council tax bills in Suffolk would go up by 6.8pc - £9.30 a year for Band B properties - Tim Passmore’s proposals were backed by Suffolk Police and Crime Panel members.

Mr Passmore told the PCP meeting that he remains deeply frustrated by the way the government funds Suffolk police.

He said: “Suffolk gets one of the worst deals from central government over policing. We have tried very hard to speak to government to explain that Suffolk has a poor policing settlement by nothing seems to change.”

The Norfolk Police and Crime Panel meets today (Tuesday, February 6) at 10am in the Edwards Room at County Hall.

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