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South Wales Police council tax precept rise agreed

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: January 29, 2013

Comments (11)

THE amount of money people in Swansea and Neath Port Talbot contribute to policing is to rise by seven per cent this year.

The changes will mean a typical Band D household in the South Wales Police area paying £181 a year towards the force.

The increase was proposed by police commissioner Alun Michael, and approved by members of the police panel by 10 votes to two at yesterday's meeting. Mr Michael said the increase was the minimum that was needed.

He told the meeting: "I would be irresponsible if I came forward with a smaller increase than this.

"I do not want the burden on local people to be any higher then it has to be.

"Even after this increase, South Wales will have by far the lowest precept of the four Welsh forces."

Mr Michael pointed out that over the last decade the former South Wales Police Authority had voted for low precept increases, which effectively meant that the force had "lost" £141million in potential investment compared to the other Welsh forces — in Gwent Police the current Band D precept is £193.09, in Dyfed-Powys it is £198.54 and in North Wales it is £214.56.

Mr Michael said the money raised by the seven per cent increase would enable the force to keep 40 PCSOs who were under threat due to a changes in grants, and allow for the creation of a £1million community partnership fund to help tackle issues like antisocial behaviour. Members of the panel raised concerns about the increase, especially at a time when many people were struggling financially.

Neath Port Talbot Council leader Ali Thomas said any increase would be felt hard, and that it might mean "the difference between buying a loaf and bread and not buying it".

He also questioned whether the Welsh Government would cap any increase over five per cent.

Pauline Jarman, a Plaid councillor on Rhondda Cynon Taf Council, called the seven per cent increase "inhuman" and tried to get the proposal vetoed.

Swansea councillor Pearleen Sangha said five out of 10 of the most deprived wards in Wales were in the city, but that she was in favour of the increase, adding: "In my view we need the PCSOs."

Last week Dyfed-Powys Police commissioner Christopher Salmon increased the council tax precept there by of 3.9 per cent, and added that he wanted to bring rises into line with inflation over the next four years.

Three quarters of funding for the four Welsh forces comes from the Home Office — either directly or via the Welsh Government — with the remainder being raised locally.

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  • thomastdout  |  January 31 2013, 10:21AM

    You are quite correct BENNY BOYO council taxes have not gone up in England.What do you expect when you elect a liebor politician,taxes on the working people and subsidies for the sick lame and lazy.

    |   1
  • skewenboy  |  January 30 2013, 6:28AM

    "I don't mind paying for a service but too many of us are paying and not getting that service." Couldn't agree with you more, brochadav!

    |   2
  • bennyhill4  |  January 29 2013, 7:11PM

    gowerton citizen, So council taxes have'nt gone up in england then. Typical anti labour cr*p twisting facts to suit you'r biased views.( blame the welsh assembly for everything) but turn a blind eye to the cuts imposed by that tory shower in london

    |   -4
  • Gowercitizen  |  January 29 2013, 3:53PM

    When you vote in a Labour politician you can expect above inflation increases in paying any kind of tax. The doubling and more of Council Tax since the advent of the Assembly shows this to be the case.

    |   7
  • deridu  |  January 29 2013, 3:25PM

    Made up job for Mr,Michael... get rid of him his wages would be a good contribution to the police. What is your wage for this needless job.??? Do we know?? WHY have we got this extra charge for policing??? as stated many of us do not use or get the service as should be. Great perk foor them now Swans are !st div. WHY isn`t the FOOTBALL paying towards this they use a lot more of the police,surely this would make sense for all the extra policing used. Rugbt too could contribute as small part of funds here. Try getting a police visit to a call at the time of a match....this is practically impossible.

    |   11
  • brochadav  |  January 29 2013, 12:39PM

    When, and it has happened already, I need the police and they fail to come, can I claim a refund? I don't mind paying for a service but too many of us are paying and not getting that service. I still say we should ditch PCSO's and use their money to take on fully warranted officers. Employ the best PCSO's, but do something to get real police officers back on our streets.

    |   10
  • weslangdon  |  January 29 2013, 11:21AM

    He has passed on a Tory cut to the South Wales public, not something he was elected to do, nor was it in his manifesto, nor has he a mandate as so few voted... Tread carefully Mr. Michael; there is little love for the Police and only marginally more respect, I voted for you but my support is conditional.

    |   6
  • lancelot69  |  January 29 2013, 11:08AM

    So when services such as health care and policing get cuts in the work force our council tax remains the same but when some hotshot decides to increase the policing again we have to pay this substantial increase? Wow, it's amazing how we have no control whatsoever

    |   13
  • Julesbreadbox  |  January 29 2013, 10:12AM

    intriguing, of course!

    |   -2
  • saddned  |  January 29 2013, 10:12AM

    It seems even the police have a licence to print money these days!! totally disguisting in these times of need. I wonder what increases they will propsose if we ever get out of this mess??? 20%??

    |   12