Have your say on council tax increase to fund Greater Manchester Police

The Greater Manchester Combined Authority are letting residents have their say on a proposition to increase council tax to fund improvements in policing.

A new consultation has proposed a £10 increase for a Band D property or £7.77 for a Band B property – which the majority of Greater Manchester taxpayers will pay.

The GMCA say that the money will be used to help keep communities safe by boosting response times to reported crimes and funding more officers.

Between 2011-19, the Government cut the grant they provide to GMP in real terms by £215 million, resulting in 2,000 fewer police officers and 1,000 fewer support staff.

It comes after clear evidence of improvement in Greater Manchester Police (GMP) performance under the new Chief Constable, which they wish to continue.

Under Chief Constable Stephen Watson, the 52-week average answer time for 999 calls of 36 seconds has reduced to 27 seconds, there has been a 55 per cent reduction in the waiting list for incidents to be dealt with and investment in 167 extra new cars for response officers.

The proposal aims to reverse “years of government cuts to frontline policing” and wants officer numbers back up to nearly 75 percent of the 2000 lost since 2010.

Also on the proposal:

  • The transformation of the GMP contact centre that deals with 999 and 101 calls to ensure calls are answered quickly.
  • 438 additional police officers – 60 of them dedicated to road safety which will allow TravelSafe officers to focus on other policing such as public transport safety.
  • Continuation of the new Operation Avro days of action. These days, which will take place in each area of Greater Manchester, will see a surge of officers and specially trained teams dealing with issues communities tell GMP they want to see dealt with.
  • A community messaging system that Neighbourhood Policing Teams will use to inform local communities about what they are doing and that the public can use to get more involved in working with local police officers to identify issues of concern.

Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, said: “Having withheld the full increase of the police precept this time last year due to performance issues, GMP is now in a different position. We now have a new Chief Constable with a new improvement plan, and we should show our confidence in that plan. That is why should be backing him through more resources to get GMP to where it needs to be.

“Under the new Chief Constable’s leadership, he has already made considerable progress in tackling crime and remains on track to fully implement his improvement plan. While there is still more to do, I hope the public will agree with me in this consultation process to support our police by giving them more funding so they can truly transform into the service we want them to be and keep our communities safe.”

Have your say

The public can respond to the police precept consultation at www.gmconsult.org by Thursday 27 January 2022.

The final precept needs to be agreed by the Greater Manchester Police, Fire and Crime Panel which is made up of councillors from each of the 10 councils and is chaired by a councillor.

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