Cost of Gloucestershire Police and Crime Commissioner revealed
WHEN the role of the Police and Crime Commissioner was first announced, the Government promised the cost would be no more than the police authorities they replaced.
But many of the costs and the supporting structure surrounding the position will actually be controlled by the person elected on November 15.
Gloucestershire's first ever commissioner will be paid £65,000 a year.
They will have to employ a chief executive and chief financial officer, and the staff running the current police authority will be transferred to the new commission.
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However, the Police and Crime Commissioner will have the power to employ more or less staff.
They will also be able to employ a deputy – and decide that individual's pay.
There will be no restrictions on the appointment, although the county council's Police and Crime Panel, set up to support the commissioner, will approve the choice.
They will be answerable to the public when voters go to the polls every four years and have to publicise their annual budgets. The panel, which was set up in July, has 12 members made up of at least 10 councillors from all political parties and two independent members.
Andy Champness, chief executive of Gloucestershire Police Authority, will become chief executive of the Commission following the elections.
He said: "The framework for setting the budget for policing is not changing so the overall budget is within the same parameters.
"What the police minister said is that the governance and support should not increase. The way the Police and Crime Commissioner office will work is very different to the police authority, so it is like comparing apples and pears.
"But it will be up to the Commissioner to choose how to organise the budget, which includes all the money available for policing as well as governance and support.
"The more spent on governance and support the less available for operational policing."
In a survey of 200 people on www.thisisgloucestershire.co. uk, 111 people (55 per cent) thought the elected commissioner should be paid less than the £65,000 on the table. Just 19 people (9.5 per cent) felt it should pay more, while the remainder felt it was reasonable.
The Police and Crime Commissioner will be paid £65,000 a year.
The commissioner will be obliged to employ a chief executive and a chief financial officer.
The commissioner will decide how many other staff they require for governance and support.
If the commissioner takes on more staff any appointments will have to be chosen on merit.
A deputy commissioner can be appointed at the commissioner’s choice and there are no restrictions on their pay or who is chosen for the job. They can be political.
A police and crime panel, administered by Gloucestershire County Council, will support the commissioner.
The panel, which was set up in July, has 12 members made up of at least 10 councillors from all political parties and two independent members.
A special responsibility allowance of £5,808 a year will be paid to the panel chairman.
Expenses of up to £920 per year will also be available to each member.
The Home Office will provide £53,300 funding for the panel to cover support and running costs to include the expenses.
Funding in 2012-13 will be around half of this amount to account as the commissioner will only be in place for six months of the financial year.
The election will also cost the tax payer an expected to come to £75 million nationally, which will reduce in the future as elections coincide with others in May.
The cost of the 2012 election will be met by direct funding from the Home Office, with no call on local policing budgets.
The Police Authority cost the tax payer £766,000 last year, plus £394,000 for employees.
The six employees include a chief executive and a treasurer and the new PCC will be obliged to employ a new chief executive, a chief financial officer.
The 17 members of the Police Authority took home £182,224.31 last year – including £172,013.24 in allowances and £10,211.07 in expenses.