Letters: Stephen Bett, February 27, 2015

Stephen Bett ENGANL00120120117161500
Stephen Bett ENGANL00120120117161500
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I would like to respond to Ken Butcher (Letters, February 24) and the claims that I do not take public opinion into account.

In recent months alone my office has carried out three major consultations – on my Police and Crime Plan, on what a Community Remedy for Norfolk should look like and latterly over whether the policing element of the council tax should be frozen or rise two per cent.

Hundreds of people responded to these consultations and their views were read and considered.

In fact more than 1,000 took part in our precept consultation and did have their say. Some 64 per cent of people voted for a two per cent increase which is what I then proposed and implemented.

The Community Remedy, which gives victims of crime a greater say on how people who commit low-level crime or anti-social behaviour are dealt with, changed as a direct result of public opinion. On the question of PCSO match funding I am clear that this is an option offered by Norfolk Constabulary that a council may wish to take up; they may not.

The choice lies entirely with the authority concerned. Norfolk’s Chief Constable continues to make it clear that the force faces a huge financial challenge in the coming years.

As I wrote in the Lynn News recently the force has no choice but to introduce a number of unpalatable measures due to the relentless squeeze on policing by central Government. Nobody wants to be in this situation but this is the stark reality of where we are.

Stephen Bett,

Police and Crime

Commissioner for Norfolk