Average increase of £1 a month to policing precept agreed
Following a public consultation, Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon Angus Macpherson has today (1/02) set the police and crime element of council tax for 2018-19.
It will go up by one pound per month for the average property (band D) meaning the current contribution of £14.19 per month to local policing will increase to £15.19 per month.
The increase, unanimously supported by the Police and Crime Panel today at Monkton Park in Chippenham, will help to protect community policing and prevent further cuts.
Mr Macpherson said: "I am pleased that we have had a positive response from the public throughout the consultation; at area board and locality meetings, through social media and the website.
"The consultation clearly showed that the public are in favour of the increase with 70% of respondents supporting the rise.
"As a Force, Wiltshire Police has seen the second highest change in the country in emergency incidents when comparing 2015/16 with 2016/17, yet the funding we receive from central government doesn't recognise the increasing pressures we face.
"In fact we receive the fourth lowest funding per head of population in England and Wales."
Since 2010, Wiltshire Police has received £19 million less from central government but have been responding to more crimes and supporting more members of the public year on year.
The increase in the policing part of local council tax will provide an additional £3 million and means that the 445 police officers and 131 Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) in Community Policing Teams (CPTs) will be protected.
Mr Macpherson added, "I am pleased to be supporting local policing. This increase will help close the funding gap, and whilst savings still need to be made Community Policing Teams will not be affected.
"Unfortunately this will not mean more officers on the beat; however it certainly will not mean any less. And whilst we're able to maintain our services this year, we're hopeful of being able to invest a substantial sum into them next year.
"I will continue to fight for fair funding for Wiltshire so that we get a reasonable share of the national funding pot.
"I am pleased today that the Police and Crime Panel have recognised the result of the consultation, the strength of the case, and have endorsed the precept."