Commissioner unveils plans to increase police precept by 4.4%

JD With Budget Info

Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire, John Dwyer, has launched his budget survey today (Tuesday, 4th January).

Residents are being asked to give their views on proposals to increase the police precept – the part of council tax that goes towards Cheshire Constabulary by 4.4% for the next financial year 2022/23.

A budget has been produced which includes recruiting an extra 120 officers alongside 63 more front line staff in areas like the call centre, as well as schemes to tackle anti-social behaviour (ASB), and road safety initiatives.

John Dwyer, Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire, said: "I believe this budget represents what residents of Cheshire have told me they want. More officers, better call response times, and an increased focus on tackling ASB and making our roads safer.

"This budget will build on the work done since I took office in May, where nearly £4 million in extra funding has been brought in to prevent and tackle crime in our county, and in that time the Chief Constable and I have also been able to commit to taking our officer numbers to the highest level in modern times – 2,345. This should give people confidence in our Constabulary to deliver the priorities set out in my Police and Crime Plan."

In order to support this investment, the Commissioner is asking local people if they would be willing to pay approximately 83p per month extra via the police precept, for the average band D household.

John Dwyer added: "We are benefiting from increased funding from central government and the national Police Officer Uplift programme, however in my Autumn Survey I was up front with people – I said a small precept rise would be necessary in order to keep the police at a standstill – And over 85% of people who expressed a view said they were happy to pay more above this in order for the Constabulary to have more resources.

"The most popular option by some way was an increase in the police precept of 20p per week above standstill – Equivalent to £1.04 per month - However I am ultimately asking residents for less than this.

"This is because I am extremely conscious of the cost of living, and the fact that residents gave a diverse range of views. I am also aware that asking for support to raise the precept even further would require me to hold a referendum, which I do not believe would be a valuable use of people's hard-earned money."

In addition to the online survey, the Commissioner will be holding a series of 'Consultation Roadshow' events around the county throughout January where people can speak to him directly and take the survey in person.

The online 'Commissioner and Chief Constable's Question Time' event for residents of Cheshire East will be held on Monday 10th January from 7 – 8:30pm.

To register for the local online event, send your name, question and postcode to [email protected] by 11:59pm the day before the event.

John Dwyer added: "I want to hear from as many people as possible, which is why I'm committed to getting out there to let people know how their police service will deliver on their priorities.

"Put simply: This budget will enable me and the Chief Constable to put more police on the streets and invest in the areas that matter to you. I encourage everyone to have their say."

To take the Commissioner's survey online, go to www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/yourpolicebudget2022-23 and complete it by midday on Tuesday 25th January.

To request a hard copy of the survey, email [email protected]

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Comments

Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Jonathan Follows
Tuesday 4th January 2022 at 4:26 pm
It's irritating that the survey asks more questions about my sexuality, age, race and so on than the main question about whether or not I'm happy about the increase in precept. I'm not happy about it, but I have little doubt that it'll go ahead regardless.
Shaun Waugh
Tuesday 4th January 2022 at 8:23 pm
So it's 4.4% this year on top of 7.1% last year, 5.0% in 2020/21 bill, 13.6% for 1019/20, 7.3% for 2018/19. I think someone needs to go back to the drawing board and look at where the 56% increase in the last 10 years has been used. I filled in the survey and said I thought it wrong to keep increasing the money year on year.
Our government have promised us extra police officers so I assume we will pay for that through our normal taxes.
Nick Jones
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 9:08 am
Reading articles on this site and it sister , re break-ins, vehicle thefts, serious assaults, etc... alongside closure of local station and even more reduced services... It really is an example of paying more to get less... That's not the ticket that JD came into office upon.. Very disappointing to have more of the same, lessons clearly not being learnt .
Tony Haluradivth
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 10:23 am
The survey is "bunkum..
.. the same rigged one each year can be filled in by ANYONE in the world multiple times. The only TRUE survey would be an email (yes CEC have ALL the email addresses) or a letter sent to each home which actually PAYS the Council Tax. They will never do that as this far more accurate survey would probably give a resounding No. I am very disappointed Dwyer has chosen to carry on this questionable practice started by his forebear Keane. He uses the dodgy survey result to justify his precept increase.....I suggest that big savings can be made by scrapping his role and office
Fred Rayers
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 11:16 am
My suspicion is that the completion rate of the survey is likely to be far higher from those with a vested interest, such as anyone working for the police, than the general public who have to pay and use the services delivered.

Not attempting to identify those who answer makes it worse than dodgy, especially of those with a vested interest have been given any information on the survey not available to the general public.
Julian Barlow
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 1:59 pm
The common terminology when someone takes your money without permission is theft. However luck is on John Dwyer's side and he'll likely get away with it, as the policing around here is dreadful.
Alan Brough
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 2:09 pm
For what it's worth (I suspect not much) I will complete the survey and echo the comments of others above that we are being being forced to pay much more for a service that is delivering much less.

I would have expected this sort of duplicity from David Keane but I'm bitterly disappointed to see John Dwyers claim that this is what he thinks Cheshire residents want.
David Smith
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 2:35 pm
Well, there's no box to tick that says you have told the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth and asking God for help - so I guess you can put what you like depending on how mischievous you might be feeling at the time.
Could explain perhaps how there suddenly might be a huge increase in the number of lesbians living in town!
John Harries
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 2:57 pm
It comes as no surprise. These 'surveys' are usually 'loaded' and a waste of time anyway (unless the results/ analysis are first publicly released/explained long before subsequent actions/outcomes are taken - especially expenditure); it says nothing for policing policy but a great deal in regard to popularity and profile.
I personally would be happy to pay the full monty precept increase of £1.04/month but not to support the sort of 'remote/detached' policing Handforth/Wilmslow/AE are presently being offered. Some of the anecdotal responses the police now offer victims of robbery, theft, common assault, ASB and irresponsible/dangerous road behaviour are frankly laughable and does little to raise the public esteem (and respect) our police should command.
Barry Buxton
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 3:56 pm
The "survey" is no such thing, it's a total and shameful disgrace! Instead of yet another increase there should be relentless focus on improving efficiency and curtailing overgenerous early retirement deals. Am I being thick but I don't get where David Smith is coming from re lesbians.
Terry Roeves
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 3:59 pm
More police on the street? Has been said for years. Must be in plain clothes.
Would be useful to know how the cybercrime hires faired by increasing prosecutions and as a deterrent. Does anybody know? Not the remotest chance of finding out from Mr Dwyer.
David Smith
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 5:35 pm
Yes Barry Buxton - you are a bit thick if you have done the survey. If not, then do it and understand the meaning of my comment. If you still don't understand my comment there's not much hope for you but I will try and offer a simple explanation.
Gwynneth Littleton
Wednesday 5th January 2022 at 7:33 pm
Why use this word precept..there is a much simpler one! Gwynneth Littleton
Stuart Redgard
Thursday 6th January 2022 at 12:06 am
The simple solution is to complete the survey and say you do not agree with the increase. That's what I did.
Vic Barlow
Thursday 6th January 2022 at 2:43 pm
I am not a betting man (I don't like losing money) but I will bet a month's income Mr Dwyer will claim a resounding vote in favour of his 'public consultation' and a year's income the total number of 'votes' cast are less than one per cent of Cheshire's 940,000 residents.

I have voted twice for Mr Dwyer and am deeply disappointed he has adopted this clearly dubious method of soliciting extra funds introduced by his equally dubious predecessor.

Shame on you Mr Dwyer.
Simon Worthington
Friday 7th January 2022 at 2:55 pm
With the impending/intended closure of Wilmslow Police Station which will leave Cheshire east of the M6 with TWO police stations it should be made clear that any funds from the sale of the land will be returned to the council tax payers. Alternatively open the place properly and USE IT!!
This Policer and Crime Commissioner job must be scrapped.
Stuart Redgard
Friday 7th January 2022 at 5:43 pm
#Simon Worthington


The plan is to demolish the existing building and replace it with a much smaller one. The remaining land will then be sold for redevelopment.

As such, any closure will only be temporary whilst this work takes place.
Chris Neill
Saturday 8th January 2022 at 8:00 am
There is a least one break in/ burglary a week in the town, two this week already, 4 last week, violating homes, devastating families. Is something going wrong with the whole prevention, policing and catch system here?
Julian Barlow
Saturday 8th January 2022 at 12:39 pm
The overwhelming support for yet more price increases seem to be strangely absent when we’re able to see what people’s opinions actually are on an open forum.
Alan Brough
Saturday 8th January 2022 at 8:57 pm
#Julian Barlow,
A question of accountability… there isn’t any!
David Smith
Sunday 9th January 2022 at 12:31 pm
POLICING:
"We need MORE/BETTER police' often seems to be the message.
Suppose we had the possibility of as many policepersons [PP] as we would like. So many in fact that it would be possible to have a PP on every street corner 24 hours a day 7 days a week. This saturated PP presence would make the job of being a criminal much more difficult and help catch any who think of applying their 'profession'. The regular burglaries that are often mentioned in the likes of this forum might become a thing of the past.
I don't think there could be too much objection to that but it would of course be massively expensive and totally absurd. The job of being a PP would be pretty unattractive too.
Suppose instead of a PP at every street corner, we implemented technology and had a CCTV not just on every street corner but also on top of every lamppost, most buildings and included as manufacturers standard equipment in every vehicle. All recordings would be fed automatically into a ‘Big Brother’ database tagged with time & location. There would then be a wealth of recorded data from all over the place. Whenever a 'crime' was reported the Police [or whoever is responsible for dealing with the 'incident'] could refer to the stored data with a location and time when the incident occurred and gather an assortment of information that could lead to a timely arrest and satisfactory solution. Much better, quicker and more reliable than asking the public if anyone, just by chance, happens to have any recordings on their phones, car cameras or house CCTV systems - which now include doorbells!
Such widespread ‘Big Brother’ CCTV surveillance will I am sure create widespread denunciation from the ‘freedom’ fighters, data protection advocates, privacy intrusion protectors and who knows even the ‘anti-vaccination brigade’.
So how then are we going to balance the request for more PP’s but don’t want to pay for them despite living in an absurdly wealthy area of the UK and at the same time speak out against any possible intrusion into our freedom/liberty/privacy etc. [call it what you like]?

Extra Council Tax higher bands for the increase in luxury gin palaces that are springing up over town - or perhaps a local Income Tax? Will anyone replying against either of these solutions please state your income and value of the house(s) that you have in your possession. There’s another general principle that seems to be lost in the current financial mess that is the UK plc. - and is simply that if money needs to be raised for any public purse it CANNOT be ‘got’ from those who don’t have any.

Otherwise answers please on a postcard - but not to me!
Chris Neill
Wednesday 12th January 2022 at 5:01 pm
In today’s Daily Telegraph , 12 jan, front page,

“ Burglaries have dropped by half and detection rates trebled, after police sent officers to every crime scene and burglary in Northants. Ministers have urged forces in Greater Manchester to implement this policy.”

Are you and the local force aware of this John ?

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