Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting RA NEWS to 80360 or e-mail us
Elected police figureheads here to stay
7:00am Friday 4th October 2013 in News
THE region’s deputy police and crime commissioner (PCC) says he is confident elected force figureheads are here to stay – despite calls to scrap the roles.
Barrie Sheldon said the positions do have a future despite the West Midlands’ PCC Bob Jones saying he wanted them axed.
Mr Sheldon became Bill Longmore’s deputy last year following a dismal 14 per cent turnout at the November elections.
Mr Jones, a Labour PCC, said he wanted the party to commit to an old pledge to end the positions if it wins the 2015 general election.
He used a speech in Birmingham to say, if he had the chance, he’d do away with his own job and spend more money on front line services.
Mr Sheldon said: “If we get a change of government then it’ll be an issue for Labour, as when the PCC idea was first raised they said they didn’t agree with the concept.
“But even if they did decide to end them, it will take a long legislative process and that can’t possibly happen overnight.
“It might take them an entire term (of parliament) to actually do that, so what I am saying is that I see PCCs will be here to stay, at the very least, for some time.
“Since we started these positions I’ve had former police authority members saying ‘we actually see merit in PCCs’.
“The chief constable David Shaw has told me and Bill he’s never had as much feedback since we started work – it is beginning to come together and, we’ve always said, judge us in three years time.”
The duo, both former police officers, came under fire last year after Mr Longmore appointed his former campaign publicity manager as his deputy.
It led to critics accusing the duo of “cronyism”, but in recent months the attacks have died down.
Mr Longmore is currently working on two fresh plans to reduce crime, one specific to the business community and the other for businesses.
It was reported earlier this month, PCSOs have also been placed in schools.
Comments are closed on this article.