Frontline to be boosted by 228 extra cops in South Yorkshire for 19p a week for most households

South Yorkshire’s frontline is to be boosted by 228 extra police officers over the next year – for 19p a week for most households.

Thursday, 25th February 2021, 10:21 am

The county’s Police and Crime Commissioner is using government funding to pay for 149 new officers and will pay for another 79 through a council tax rise.

He has asked for the portion allocated to South Yorkshire Police to be increased by 19p a week for most households – 57.5 per cent – although some could pay up to 58p a week extra.

Dr Alan Billings said: “For 10 years South Yorkshire faced cuts in grant and police numbers year on year – we lost 500 officers.

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There will be 228 extra police officers on the streets of South Yorkshire over the next year

“During that time organised crime gangs expanded their drug dealing activities in the county and we saw a gradual rise in serious violence

“Home Secretaries said that there was no relationship between crime and police numbers. That was a serious mistake and the commitment to restore the 20,000 officers that were lost nationally during that time is an acknowledgement of that.”

He added: “However, it is not enough to restore the cuts. The nature of crime has changed and we need more officers, not least in neighbourhood teams and in investigative capacity.

“This budget and precept means that for an additional 20p per week per household I can give the force the resources it needs to get on top of crime and anti-social behaviour.

“Put simply, there will be more high visibility jackets on the streets of South Yorkshire.”

The council tax rise was approved unanimously earlier this month by all the political parties and the two independent members represented on the Police and Crime Panel and by the Leaders of the four district councils – Sheffield, Rotherham, Barnsley and Doncaster.

The public of South Yorkshire were invited to have their say on the proposals during online consultation during December and January.

Some 2,160 responses were received, of which over two thirds said they would be willing to pay the maximum increase.

The Police and Crime Commissioner’s role involves overseeing the funding and performance of South Yorkshire Police and holding the force to account.