Have your say over council tax rise for policing

Conservative PCC Mark Shelford

Avon and Somerset PCC, Mark Shelford, has urged people to complete the survey - Credit: Supplied

People are being urged to have their say over proposals which would see their council tax rise - to fund policing.

The Police Tax Survey, over proposals from Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Mark Shelford, closes on January 21.

The survey asks local people if they would pay an increase in the policing part of the council tax, known as the precept.

The PCC is asking if residents would pay an increase of: 
- 2%, which is equivalent to approximately 40p per month/ £4.82 for the year for the average band D household

- 4.1%, which is equivalent to approximately 83p per month/ £10 for the year for the average band D household

- Or no increase at all

Mr Shelford said a £10 yearly increase would mean any savings that still need to be made would be less likely to impact frontline services whereas if the precept is not increased, the force would have to make significant savings, resulting in a reduction in services. 

"I know that any increase in household bills is felt by local people, especially due to other uncertainties as a result of the pandemic," he said.

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"This is why it is essential that everyone has the opportunity to tell me their thoughts and opinions  before I make any decision regarding an increase.

“As PCC, I have to balance the challenges facing policing with local people’s views in order to best resource an efficient and effective police service that can keep people safe.

"So, whatever your thoughts about a potential increase, please complete the survey to make sure your voice is heard.”

Local policing is funded by a combination of Home Office and other grants, as well as the precept. 

In 2022/23, the Home Office grant funding is increasing to fund additional officers as part of Operation Uplift. However, this is not enough to manage inflationary pressures like pay rises for police officers. 

The Government has told PCCs – who are responsible for setting the amount of money local people contribute to the policing part of the council tax– that they can raise the precept next year by £10 for an average band D household. 

To complete the survey, visit: https://bit.ly/332ktyN