PCC: 60 outgoing police officers to be replaced

SOUTH Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner Shaun Wright (pictured) has introduced a 3.6% increase in local tax to pay for 60 outgoing police officers to be replaced.

The proposal is expected to generate £1.6m in additional income.

It amounts to around one penny a day more in council tax and will help to replace 60 officers expected to retire in 2013/14.

Mr Wright said extra officers would also be drafted in to tackle child sexual exploitation and that more officers will be deployed into neighbourhood policing roles in the community.

There will also be 400 extra special constables on the streets over the next two years, he said.

South Yorkshire Police has had to reduce its budget by £30m since 2010 and faces a further £13m reduction over the next two years, which represents a 20 per cent cut in policing for the county.

The Police and Crime Commissioner described the government cuts as “exasperating” but said he intends to “seek ways of wringing as much value for money as I can from every single £1 we spend”.

He added: “While the underlying function of any police budget is to ensure the delivery of best value for money for taxpayers, the primary aim is that my budget will still allow the force to deliver a greater police visibility in our neighbourhoods and one that leads to a decrease in criminal activity.”

Mr Wright was elected as Labour’s candidate in South Yorkshire with 51 per cent of first preference votes.