The four candidates bidding to become Lincolnshire’s first Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) are making their final push for votes ahead of today’s election.
Just days before the winner of the £65,000-a-year post is announced, David Bowles (Independent), Richard Davies (Conservative), Paul Gleeson (Labour) and Alan Hardwick (Independent) are still persuading voters to back them.
Question Time events across Lincolnshire, including one in Spalding last month, have seen the candidates quizzed on anti-social behaviour, on-street drinking and punishment for criminals.
Their ability to act independently has also been questioned, leading Independent candidate Mervyn Barrett to drop out of the race after claims that his campaign was funded by companies pushing for police privatisation.
Of those left, Mr Bowles is a former chief executive of Lincolnshire County Council and promises tougher sentences for repeat offenders.
Mr Davies, a county councillor since 2009, wants more police community support officers on the streets while Mr Gleeson, a Boston borugh councillor, plans to give young people more of a say in policing issues.
Mr Hardwick has worked for Lincolnshire Police Authority for four years and promises to fight for a bigger slice of the national police budget for the county.
Meanwhile, a solicitor has jokingly urged voters to make a statement on polling day by creating an extra box marked ‘More Police Please’ on ballot papers.
Ed Foster, senior partner at Fosters Law which has an office in Long Sutton, said the estimated £75 million being spent on the election would put an extra 2,500 police officers on the streets.