Extra 7p a week to maintain the police

Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Hardwick
Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Hardwick
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Residents in South Holland are being asked for an extra 7p a week to maintain police levels.

Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Hardwick and Chief Constable Alan Rhodes showed a united front as the 1.99 per cent rise was agreed at a meeting of the Lincolnshire Police and Crime Panel.

But Mr Hardwick was not present when the panel later called for him to make an official written apology to Mr Rhodes for the handling of his suspension, which had sparked an investigation costing the tax payer £160,000.

Earlier, he re-affirmed his commitment to ensuring the county’s policing priorities are met despite central government police funding being reduced by 4.8 per cent – equivalent to a loss of £3.1m to Lincolnshire.

Mr Hardwick said approval would ensure continued employment for the 1,100 police officers and 149 PCSOs in operation across the county.

He said: “This further underlines our ability in Lincolnshire to build on our success as one of the country’s leanest and most efficient forces and continue to find more efficient ways of serving the public through transformation.”

Meanwhile, Mr Rhodes warned that the force still had significant savings to make over the next few years.

He added: “We are close to the stage that it has to come out of police officer numbers so it’s a very, very stark choice.

“With this 1.99 per cent increase we are still going to be in business.”

Spalding Community Inspector Jim Tyner said: “Money is tight for all of us, so no one likes the thought of a rise in the police precept part of the council tax.

“This rise in council tax equates to around 7p a week for a band D property. I hope people feel that this represents good value so we can protect the frontline policing services in South Holland.”