PCCs in Wales look back at first year in post

From top left: Christopher Salmon, Alun Michael, Ian Johnston, Winston Roddick From top left: Christopher Salmon, Alun Michael, Ian Johnston, Winston Roddick

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A year into the job, the four police and crime commissioners (PCC) in Wales have been speaking about how they think things have gone.

Replacing the old police authorities, they were elected in November 2012 to hold the police to account and to set the budget for their force area.

In a survey for the BBC over a third of people said they did not know they had a PCC.

Despite this commissioners in Wales say they feel they have made a difference.

The findings of the BBC poll, published a year after the first PCC elections were held, indicate that 35% do not know if they have one, while 3% think - incorrectly - that they do not.

Dyfed-Powys Police

Christopher Salmon says a PCC should be "constantly in his (chief constable's) ear saying 'what are you doing to make my life better and my community safer'?".

The businessman told the BBC's Sarah Moore there will never be enough officers but the priority will always be to make sure money goes to the "front line".

Gwent Police

Police and Crime Commissioners are here to stay and are already making a difference, says Ian Johnston.

Mr Johnston served Gwent Police for 33 years and then was vice-president and president of the Police Superintendents' Association.

He faced controversy after it emerged he had ordered his then chief constable to "retire or be removed" in June.

Mr Johnston said he has had an "eventful" year but says morale within the force is "off the richter scale" and he had been out and about talking and listening to what people want.

He told Jordan Davies his role has changed the shape and direction of the Gwent Police force in 12 months.

South Wales Police

Reducing crime and preventing reoffending is at the heart of everything he does, says Alun Michael.

The former home office minister and MP said he was working hard on "good partnerships" between police and a variety of other agencies as a way to "add value" to what he is doing.

Public recognition of his job is not important but a reduction in crime will be a "tick in the box" at the end of his term, he told BBC Wales' Stephen Fairclough.

North Wales Police

Complaints from the farming community about inadequate policing of rural areas have been dealt with by setting up a rural crime team, said Winston Roddick.

He said it was one of the things which he had been able to push through and whilst it had been a success it is still early days for most people to know what the role of a PCC entails.

Mr Roddick, a leading barrister, told BBC Wales' Chris Dearden that despite financial cut-backs being a burden it also means better use is being made of available resources.

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