The Police and Crime Commissioner for Avon and Somerset Sue Mountstevens wants residents to have their say on how much they are prepared to pay towards policing next year.
The Commissioner has been carrying out consultation on the policing part of the council tax since May, to ensure the views of residents are considered when making her decision regarding next year’s budget.
Ms Mountstevens said:
“It’s really important that residents tell me what they would be prepared to contribute towards policing. For the past three years the policing part of the council tax has been frozen. Now I have the choice to freeze again and put 200 posts at risk, to increase by up to 2%, costing the average resident £3.36 extra a year, or go higher and risk a referendum.”
“These are difficult decisions and I need to be sure that I have heard from as many local people as possible before I make them.”
“The Constabulary have been working hard on what the impact of any spending cuts could look like. We already know that if the council tax is frozen residents will see a reduction in police officers and staff and this impact is bound to be felt in communities. There is a balancing act to do between making sure the Constabulary are sufficiently resourced to concentrate on the things that matter to you and not burdening already over-stretched residents with higher household bills.”
Ms Mountstevens has also spoken with over 1,000 residents whilst visiting various events across the summer where extensive budget consultation has taken place.
The budget consultation involves the completion of an on-line questionnaire at www.consultation.avonandsomerset.police.uk Copies will also be sent to local authority and other public buildings, including libraries.
For further information or to request a copy of the survey please call 01275 816377.
The consultation runs until until Friday 15th November 2013.