5 January 2021 PRECEPT SURVEY: PCC proposes more officers for the county through policing precept More officers and better communications are at the heart of Suffolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner’s plans as he asks the public to comment on his proposal to raise the policing element of the council tax by 30p a week for the next financial year for a Band D property. CLICK HERE TO TAKE PART IN THE SURVEY Tim Passmore’s proposed investment in officer numbers will allow the Chief Constable to enhance police visibility, improve communications and increase the Constabulary’s capacity to deal with complex investigations. A survey to gauge the public response to his proposal goes live today. Late last year Policing Minister, Kit Malthouse gave PCCs the ability to raise the policing element of the precept by up to £15 per annum for a Band D property for the next financial year, Suffolk’s PCC is proposing to use this maximum increase. If the plans go ahead, this extra funding will see in the region of 70 additional police officers recruited to the force in the next financial year, including those promised by Government as part of the national Operation Uplift initiative. Tim Passmore said, “As your Police and Crime Commissioner, setting the budget is one of my most important responsibilities. I must ensure that the Chief Constable has the resources he needs to provide an effective service, whilst ensuring that I use Suffolk taxpayers’ money efficiently. I believe my proposals for the precept address some of the major concerns the public raise with me, such as making it easier for the public to contact Suffolk Police and fraud prevention. It also ensures the Constabulary is equipped to meet the challenges it faces. “I have worked closely with the Chief Constable to agree how the potential funding will be allocated. It is a difficult balance but one that I believe meets the needs of the council taxpayer. I hope people will take the opportunity to respond to the survey and let me know their thoughts.” He added, “I appreciate how difficult this past year has been for everyone, especially those whose livelihoods have been affected by the pandemic. However, this pandemic has also shown just how important policing is to us all, so I hope the people of Suffolk will understand why I’m making this difficult proposal. “The Chief Constable has presented his plan for the next financial year and has assured me that my major concerns – improved investigations, protection of vulnerable people and better communications – have been addressed.” Chief Constable, Steve Jupp said, “The Constabulary has worked very hard to ensure previous precept investments have been used wisely and are making a real difference across the county. Suffolk is continuing to grow and develop and we must keep pace to ensure the Constabulary is equipped to deal with new emerging challenges that meets the needs of all our communities. “The Constabulary needs to continue to focus on improving investigations, protecting vulnerable people and provide better public contact and communications. This investment is essential to ensure Suffolk Constabulary continues to deliver a high-quality service, catches criminals and keeps the public safe.” If the Police and Crime Panel supports the proposed increase Suffolk will also be able to recruit 27 civilians who will provide specialist support for officers in the form of digital and intelligence expertise which is urgently needed to keep pace with the changing pattern of crime. The PCC will present his proposal to increase the policing element of the council tax to the Police and Crime Panel on January 29th for their approval. The papers for this meeting will be published five days before on Suffolk County Council’s website, www.suffolk.gov.uk. To find out what this means to households across all of the council tax bands please click here. The survey will close at 9am on Thursday 28th January 2021. Anyone not able to take part in the electronic survey can write to the PCC at The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, Suffolk Police HQ, Portal Avenue, Martlesham Heath IP5 3QS. Please answer the question: Do you agree with my proposal to increase the policing element of the council tax for 2021/22 by 30p a week*?(* based on a Band D property) with a clear YES or NO and include any comment you wish to make. The written response needs to be in the office by 5pm on Wednesday 27th January.