Posted: Saturday 15th February 2014
As Commissioner, I’ve set out some ambitious goals to make Nottinghamshire safer, including a promise to bolster the frontline at a time when many Forces are considering thinning. It’s an unfortunate reality that not much can be achieved without funding and investment and if we are to have any real chance of meeting the improvements I’ve set out in my Police and Crime Plan then we need to strengthen capacity and make the best of the resources we have. My financial plan for 2014-15 has now received approval from the Police and Crime Panel and I am pleased to say that it enables me to meet my recruitment pledges and fund more bobbies and PCSOs, thanks to the additional contribution local people will pay towards council tax.
However, our financial circumstances are still very difficult and we are running a very tight ship indeed in order to be able to satisfy the public demand for visible, uniformed policing. How we might continue to do that in the future is still something we are very much trying to work out and I’ve made no secret of the fact that we will need to embrace change and accept compromise if we are to balance future budgets. This will inevitably mean fewer buildings but as I’ve said previously the public understand we are no longer in a position where we can have both. In consultation with the Chief Officer team we are continuing to number crunch to give us the security we need in the medium-term to fulfill our recruitment plans and go some way to making Nottinghamshire a safer place to live.
Early intervention is a key theme in these safety plans and this month I’ve been able to visit more of the service providers who have received funding from my Community Safety Partnership Fund to help support victims of crime and break the offending cycle. This week I visited staff at Nottingham’s W R Here charity which has received £2,000 towards the cost of counselling workshops promoting self-esteem and helping vulnerable adults and children rebuild their lives, including those who have been affected by domestic violence. I was very impressed with the preventative work taking place which is helping sufferers to recover and move on. The hope is early action will reduce the pressure on police services in the future.
Finally, just a note that the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner is moving from February 24 to the first floor of Arnot Hill House, Arnold – a detached building in the grounds of Arnot Hill Park. Located next to the Civic Centre, the aim is to make me more accessible to the public and enable many of my activities to happen in one place. The council offers very good conference facilities including a number of meeting rooms and the council chambers which should make it easier for me and my team to conduct our business. Anyone wanting to contact me by letter can now do so at the following address:
Nottinghamshire Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner
Arnot Hill House
Arnot Hill Park
Telephone 0115 844 5998
Fax 0115 844 5081