Tory Essex crime commissioner raises prospect of 5% council tax increase to tackle crime

Crime / Mon 1st Nov 2021 at 12:18pm

ESSEX’S Tory crime commissioner has raised the possibility of increasing the police precept by £10 per band D household – as the force aims to bring down crime across the county.

The Chancellor allowed for additional funding for crime commissioners – including Essex’s Roger Hirst – to put up the precept each year for the next three years by £10 on a band D property during the budget on Wednesday.

In Essex that would mean the policing element of the council tax precept for the average band D property rising to £218 in April next year.

The budget and any council tax levies have not been set yet but band D households were billed in 2021/22 for £208.53 following an increase of 4.98 per cent amounting to £9.90 per year.

The challenge facing Essex police has been detailed in its police and crime plan 2021/2024.

Between 2016/217 and 2020/21 all crime – including crimes such as stalking and harassment – has increased 22 per cent.

Violence with injury increased by four per cent, rape and sexual assault has increased by 57 per cent, drugs (possession and trafficking) has increased by 124 per cent.

However burglary decreased by 33 per cent, anti-social behaviour decreased by 15 per cent, theft has decreased by 30 per cent and people killed or seriously injured on Essex roads has reduced by 29 per cent.

Mr Hirst said: “The Government have said that there will be an increase in the level to which the council tax precept can be increased without need for a referendum and that will be £10 per annum for three years.

“For our level of band D council tax that is effectively five per cent.

“That is something that we do not have to do but have the freedom to do.

“That is certainly going to be something that leads to detail discussions around how we actually use that money to best effect.

“But we know we have to improve community safety, we know we have to complete that shift towards prevention, we know we have to get crime down.

“Because there have been too many crimes. We are not in a low crime environment.

“There will be places we wish to invest and I am very confident that we will wish to use at least a good chunk if not all of that precept freedom to make a difference for those living in this county.

“Certainly in previous years we have had good support for levels well ahead of a £10 increase per annum.

“We will be conducting a usual precept survey and will we use that as an input to this process.”

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6 Comments for Tory Essex crime commissioner raises prospect of 5% council tax increase to tackle crime:

2021-11-01 15:45:52

It won't apply to Harlow, surely as the Tories promised to reduce our council tax! Seriously, this doesn't seem to be much to reduce crime and keep our streets safer. It would be interesting to compare proposed police spending with what is was under labour

2021-11-01 19:28:35

Unless poverty, lack of opportunities, greed, poor prison systems to rehabilitate, drugs and the culture of crime are eliminated first or radically reduced, then reactive spending on tackling crime that's already taken place will continue to rise and rise. To paraphrase an old Blair Labour mantra, being tough on crime and not on the causes of crime is a crime in itself.

2021-11-02 10:15:02

Increased population=increased crime. council's selling our land off here there everywhere and this has happened for years. The police need power's that work they need stop pandering to the left and grow a backbone which i know is hard when your hands are tied. Our judge's are a joke our if someone is let out of prison early for what ever reason and commit's a crime the person who signed the realease should be sacked with no pension then they might do their job properly. Someone need's to be held to account when this happen's. Police number's should be linked immigration the more people = more police more doctor's more fireman... More house's = more money for Goverments, council's, utility's company's, supermarket's and so on so why should mr&mrs everyday have to keep paying more and more.

tony edwards
2021-11-02 20:02:21

In 2018/19 the Police precept in the Council Tax for a band D Harlow property was £169.02. In 2022/23 it will be £218 That is an increase of 30% in four years. Hopefully this will put an end to the old lie that the "Conservatives keep down your "Council Tax". We can then have an adult debate as to why there is a need to raise local taxes, it is because of cuts in government funding - either that or cut services. Remember the Conservative Government cuts in 2015 led to the loss of over 600 Essex police officers and 15 Essex Police Stations To his credit the Essex Commissioner Roger Hirst (who is a Conservative) has sought to address that issue and has been slowly increasing the number of officers but we are yet to get back the 2015 level. But the only way he can do this is by raising the precept. Remember despite the Conservative Government's statements to the contrary "Cuts have Consequences"!

David Forman
2021-11-02 21:16:19

I believe £10 extra on the council tax is worth it to get more police officers and better equipment for them. Only Labour politicians spin the yarn about 'free this' or 'free broadband'. Most sensible people know public services need to be paid for. Save on three beers in a year and it's covered.

2021-11-03 06:30:05

I seem to remember under tony blair their was police stations and schools being sold off and that was the first time i had heard of police stations opening part time in some areas. Lucky corbin didnt get in as some of his ranks wanted the police scraped altogether.

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