Police and Crime Panel makes precept recommendation

The Gwent Police and Crime Panel has reviewed the proposed council tax precept increase set out by the Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent, Jeff Cuthbert.

It has recommended that the Commissioner considers options to reduce the proposed precept increase from 5.49 per cent for 2021/22, on the condition that is does not affect front line officer and staff numbers.

The Gwent Police and Crime Panel, which is a body made up of representatives from each of Gwent’s five counties, made the recommendation at a meeting on Friday 29 January.

Police and Crime Commissioner Jeff Cuthbert said: “The panel has a difficult decision to make. I am pleased that they haven’t vetoed the proposal and that they listened to the sound financial case made by my office and Gwent Police.

“This is one of the most difficult decisions I have had to make during my time as Commissioner and I want to reassure residents that it is not being taken lightly.

"I understand that any increase in council tax could be hard for residents, especially during this pandemic. However, the fact remains that a considerable amount of Gwent Police’s budget comes from local taxpayers and, without an increase, cuts will have to be made.

“I will speak with the Chief Constable of Gwent Police to understand how we can maximise savings and preserve the front-line before making a final decision on the precept in the coming weeks.”