West Yorkshire PCC proposes tax rise for more police officers

Mark Burns-Williamson Mark Burns-Williamson said the rise would be no more that £5 a year for most households

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The West Yorkshire police and crime commissioner (PCC) has proposed a rise in local tax to pay for new police officers.

Mark Burns-Williamson said a 3.8% rise in the police precept would allow the force to recruit 44 extra officers.

He claimed a recent public consultation suggested 57% of local taxpayers would support the increase.

The proposal will now be submitted for approval to the Police and Crime Panel.

Mr Burns-Williamson said the increase would cost no more than £5 a year for most households.

"Government cuts have hit us hard with a loss of over £100m to policing," he said.

"I pledged to protect neighbourhood policing and I have today proposed a 3.8% rise to pay for these much needed police officers in our communities.

"It is really encouraging that people have said they are prepared to pay a little more towards keeping their communities safe and hopefully this rise does not impose too heavy a burden on families in these uncertain economic times."

If approved, the increase can be introduced without a public vote.

Under the government legislation which introduced the PCC role a referendum is only required if the precept rise is more than 3.8%.

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