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Police and Crime Panel approves precept for 2023-24

Date

30 January 2023
Andy Dunbobbin

30/1/23: At a meeting this afternoon in Bodlondeb, Conwy, the North Wales Police and Crime Panel approved Police and Crime Commissioner, Andy Dunbobbin’s, proposal for a lower than inflation rate increase in the policing precept. This decision means there will be a 5.14% council tax increase for a band D property on last year (equating to a 31p per week increase, or £16.29 annually) for the financial year 2023-24.

The Police and Crime Panel is a body made up of ten councillors from across North Wales and three co-opted independent members and scrutinises the work of the Police and Crime Commissioner. Following the Panel’s agreement, the increase will now become effective from April 2023.

Around half the money for the police budget in North Wales comes from the UK Government and the rest comes from Council Tax. The amount depends on the precept levied by the Police and Crime Commissioner.

The increase in the precept for the coming financial year will help to fund several roles and initiatives as part of the Police and Crime Commissioner’s key priorities, including positions in custody detention, the coroner’s office, scientific support, and in ensuring the data the force uses is as robust as possible. Forensic software will also be upgraded as part of the changes envisaged. As further evidence of efforts to increase the visibility of the Force, an additional six Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) roles will be created; this comes on the back of 10 roles that were funded by the PCC in the last year.

John Williams, Chairman, North Wales Police and Crime Panel, commented: “The Police and Crime Panel, having exercised their statutory duty in scrutinising the precept proposal of the Police and Crime Commissioner, have agreed the proposed increase in the precept is justified and will provide for an effective and efficient policing service in North Wales.”

Andy Dunbobbin, Police and Crime Commissioner for North Wales commented: “I would like to thank the Police and Crime Panel for agreeing to my proposal for a below inflation increase in the policing precept. I know they are as conscious as I am of the pressures that members of the public are under at the moment due to the cost-of-living crisis. This fact was foremost in my mind as I came to the decision of how much of an increase to propose.

“There is a difficult balance to strike between ensuring that we provide the right level of funding to help keep the people of North Wales safe, while also ensuring that people see value for their money. We are also under a legal obligation to present a balanced budget, while also ensuring we keep Police Officer and PCSO numbers at UK and Welsh Government mandated levels. So, proposing no increase, or even a cut in the precept, would not have been an option for us, as we would not have been able to fulfil our obligations.”

“I want to assure members of the public that I will be working hard with the Chief Constable and North Wales Police to ensure that those aspects of policing that people have told me they want to see more of – visibility in communities, a focus on crime in rural areas, addressing the root causes of crime, and driving efficiencies in the Force – are acted on in the months to come.”