Posted: Tue 29th Jan 2019

North Wales Police: 7.7% rise in precept will see households pay nearly £20 more

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Jan 29th, 2019

Council taxpayers across North Wales will pay more for their police service after a 7.7% rise in the precept was approved.

Members of North Wales Police and Crime Panel yesterday backed the increase – which North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner, Arfon Jones (pictured above centre) said was needed to recruit an extra 34 officers and six more staff.

The average household will pay an additional £19.76 – 38 pence per week in their council tax to play for policing.

Mr Jones says the rise to the council tax precept will help crack down on drugs gangs, child exploitation; along with tackling domestic abuse, cybercrime and modern-day slavery.

Mr Jones said “I have worked closely with the new Chief Constable and his team to decide on the level of budget needed to deliver the priorities in my Police and Crime Plan which aims to reduce threat, risk and harm by identifying the most vulnerable people in society.

“I will do everything in my power to protect them.

“Crime is evolving and as a police force we have to change to deal with new threats like modern slavery, human trafficking and child sexual exploitation, with the threat posed by online paedophiles.”

As we previously reported a public online survey was cited as backing the rise on your council tax bill, with Mr Jones adding: “As well as consulting the public, I have had detailed discussions with the Chief Constable and his senior team who confirmed that a council tax increase of 7.74 per cent will enable much-needed investment back into the front line following a decade of financial cuts and will support the best possible operational delivery of policing in North Wales.

“It strikes a proper balance between affordability for council taxpayers and ensuring the Force can continue to be an efficient and effective force.

“Four and a half per cent of the increase was needed just for a standstill budget which would have meant that the force was unable to cope with the growing demand generated by new and emerging crime.

Chief Constable Carl Foulkes said: “We have aligned our efforts as a force to deliver on the priorities set out in the Police and Crime Plan in order that we can ensure that North Wales continues to be one of the safest places in the UK to live, work and visit.

“As a result, we are focusing our approach on strengthening front line policing, increasing our proactive capacity and protecting vulnerable people through our Operational Improvement Programme.

“In addition to the extra personnel we have recruited since 2016, we will have an additional 30 investigators who will be a major asset as we tackle the new and emerging crimes we need to concentrate on.

“Over the past decade North Wales Police has absorbed £31 million in austerity cuts and we are now having to be even smarter in the way we operate.

“As well as making the most of the diminishing budget at our disposal, we are working more closely with partners so we are making the best use of our joint resources.”

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