West Midlands PCC Bob Jones plans council tax rise

Bob Jones Bob Jones said he planned to use the extra money to get more officers onto the streets

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The West Midlands police and crime commissioner is planning to put up council tax precepts to get more officers onto the streets.

Bob Jones is proposing every household should pay an extra £3 a year which he said will raise £2m for the force.

He said: "Although it will cost people a few pounds more, it will release 100 more officers to frontline duties."

His proposals will be considered by the Police and Crime Panel at its meeting on 21 January.

He said he planned to use the money to recruit civilian staff to roles that were currently done filled by police officers but did not require police powers.

"It's the quickest and cheapest way we can get serving police officers into more operational duties and on to the streets of the West Midlands," he said.

Labour's Mr Jones said he had rejected the offer of a one-off 1% government grant in return for freezing the policing precept.

He also plans to take about £25m from the force's reserves to support projects such as new custody facilities.

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