Should there be more investment in the police service in Essex and are we willing to pay more Council Tax to provide it?
That’s one of the questions posed by Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex in a survey as part of #MakeADifference.
He is asking the Council Taxpayers of Essex for their opinions before he sets out plans for the 2020/2021 policing budget and you can contribute your views
Roger said: “Funding for Essex Police comes from two sources, central Government and local Council Tax.
“Over the past two years we have carried out surveys asking whether or not people would pay more to increase investment in policing in Essex.
“Last year, 4187 people completed the survey. Seventy-one per cent said they would be prepared to invest more in policing to help improve the service provided. As a result, we increased the policing element of Council Tax by £24 a year for the average household – the maximum permitted by the Government without a referendum.
“This extra investment is making a difference in Essex, helping us deliver an extra 368 officers, including:
o New town centre teams across the county
o More local policing
o More rural policing
o Growth in specialist officers to tackle gangs and drug related violence
“Combined with the 135 officers being funded by the Government – as part of the first wave of 20,000 extra officers promised nationally – it means we will be recruiting 503 extra officers by April 2021. Taking into account recent investments in technology and improved efficiency this will make Essex Police as strong as it has ever been.”
The survey is online until Sunday 12 January, but hard copies are also available on request by either calling the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex on 01245 291600 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. People can also write to PFCC for Essex, Kelvedon Park, London Road, Rivenhall, Witham, Essex, CM8 3HB.