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Two thirds vote in favour of Council Tax increase

Yesterday members of the Sussex Police & Crime Panel backed Katy Bourne’s decision to increase the police portion of the Council Tax bill by 5.3%.

Following the delayed Government’s announcement of the police funding settlement for 2020/21, Sussex Police & Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne had only a week to consult the public on a rise in this Council Tax. The online survey was open from 23rd to 30th January. Nearly 6,500 residents responded, with 66% in favour of the increase:

Yes4,520 (66%)
No2,329 (34%)

1,200 people who said they lived in Wealden took part in the survey. This was a much higher response rate than any other district. In Wealden the ratio in favour of the increase was the lowest: 56% voted “Yes” and 44% “No”. See the breakdown on the PCC’s website:

Following the results of the survey, Mrs Bourne proposed a maximum permissible rise of 5.3%. This would see the Council Tax for average Band D property going up by £10 to £199.91. At a meeting yesterday (Friday 31st) members of the Police & Crime Panel backed her decision. The Panel is responsible for overseeing the Commissioner and scrutinising her decisions. The panel is made up of District and County Councillors plus two independent members.

In her presentation to the Panel, Mrs Bourne highlighted that people in Sussex pay one of the lowest precepts (Council Tax) levels in England – Sussex is ranked in 33rd position out of 37 English policing bodies in 2019-20:

Sussex Police’s analysis of the demands on local policing, investigations and the need for tougher enforcement has led them to request investment in the following:

  • A central Tactical Enforcement Unit and one for each division across Sussex
  • More police officers to tackle criminality on our roads
  • Increasing investigative teams with more detectives and investigators
  • More trained dog units to help with the increase in targeted investigations
  • More local resolution centres, working closely with victims of crime
  • Increased policing presence in our towns and villages
  • Diverting more young people away from crime via the REBOOT scheme
  • Cracking down on rural crime with an expansion of the dedicated rural team
  • Increasing the digital presence of local policing teams

You can watch a webcast of the meeting of the Sussex Police & Crime Panel.

Click to see answers to the most frequently asked questions about the funding of Sussex Police.

One comment on “Two thirds vote in favour of Council Tax increase
  1. I am really concerned that policing doesn’t come to Crowborough, with our large towns and cities taking large bites of the increase and leaving us with nothing, again. What assurances can they offer to avert that situation.

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