Above:left to right: PCSO Daren Dennis, PCC David Keane, Sergeant Gareth Kerr and PCSO Philip Redshaw at a community base launch in 2018.
Cheshire’s Police and Crime panel met today to approve the budget for 2019/20 which will see extra funding from the council tax precept used for neighbourhood policing and complex crime.
Following a public consultation, in which two thirds of respondents said they would be willing to pay more, the policing precept will increase by an average £2 per month.
The commissioner launched the consultation following a government announcement that police forces nationally would receive extra funding to cover unavoidable pressures on policing but built a fixed council tax increase into the equation.
Police and Crime Commissioner David Keane said: “Raising the precept is not a decision I have taken lightly as I realise any increase in taxation will be challenging for some of our residents. However, the chief constable needs this extra investment in frontline officers to deliver a police service which is effective in keeping our communities safe.
“We have lost 135 officers since 2010 and this budget will help us start to address the adverse effects austerity has had on police numbers. The extra officers will help prevent complex crime, which often starts in our communities, at its root-cause. They will also be integral in further developing the community base model, introduced in 2018 to bring back real neighbourhood policing to Cheshire.”
Funding has also been earmarked for a dedicated cyber-crime support team within each local policing unit to deliver prevention activity for cyber-crime, which forms a significant part of unreported crime. Additional funding has also been allocated to support the investigation of domestic abuse.