By Joshua Robinson –
Frontline policing in West Yorkshire will be bolstered after backing was given for new officers and specialist staff.
The police element of Council Tax for 2024/25 was signed off by members of the West Yorkshire Police and Crime Panel on Friday 2nd February following a meeting with Tracy Brabin, Mayor of West Yorkshire.
For the majority of the region’s households, who are in Bands A to C, this will equate to between an extra 17p and 22p a week.
This funding will be used to recruit more Police Community Support Officers (PSCOs) and bring in extra Initial Contact Officers, who answer 999 and 101 calls from the public.
These new resources will support the 750 additional police officers and staff that have joined the force during the mayor’s first term in office.
West Yorkshire Mayor Tracy Brabin said: “I’m grateful to the public for backing local investment in our frontline policing services so we can continue to deliver on our vision for a safer, fairer region.”
“West Yorkshire Police has risen well to the dual challenges of increasing costs and decreased Home Office grants, but we still need a fair and sustainable funding settlement from central Government.”
“My focus remains on securing stronger frontline policing services so we can achieve the best possible outcomes for our residents and businesses.”
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Chair of the Police and Crime Panel, Cllr Eileen Taylor said: “As Police and Crime Panel Members, we live and work within the communities of West Yorkshire, and understand that the cost of living crisis impacts us all.”
“We also know that keeping our neighbourhoods safe is important to our residents, and we want West Yorkshire Police to be properly resourced to continue their good work.”
“Having had the opportunity today to understand and question her on her decision, we have unanimously supported the Mayor’s proposal for increased funding for the police, through the precept element of the council tax.”
“As a Panel we will continue to scrutinise the Mayor’s commitments to deliver on policing and crime for the people of West Yorkshire.”
A survey on the proposed increase to the police element of council tax was launched in December, with 2,063 residents responding.
Of these, 71% said they would pay extra to help protect frontline policing across West Yorkshire.
In addition, 19 focus groups and community meetings were held to gather feedback from a more diverse group of residents who might not usually be reached by the survey.
The panel meeting was held at Wakefield Town Hall.
The percentage increases are set out below.
|Council Tax Band
|Current precept cost per year
|Proposed annual increase
|Residents pay per week: