Police council tax to rise to support Derbyshire force

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Derbyshire residents will have to pay more for policing over the next year.

Hardyal Dhindsa, the county's Police and Crime Commissioner, has recommended a 1.99 per cent increase in the amount of money people pay for police services in their council tax.

The increase will see householders in a Band D property paying £180.60 per year - a £3.53 rise on last year and 6.8p extra per week.

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It will generate an extra £1million for Derbyshire Constabulary - the equivalent of 20 full-time police officer posts.

A recent budget survey by Mr Dhindsa found 79 per cent of respondents supported an increase of 1.99 per cent or higher.

The cost of policing Derbyshire in 2017-18 will be about £163m.

About two thirds of this is funded by a Government grant and about one third is from council tax.

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Derbyshire Constabulary faces a £8.6m deficit to its funding up to 2020-21 and it is anticipated that council tax precepts will continue to increase by 1.99 per cent annually up to this point to help meet the shortfall.

Mr Dhindsa said: "I'm deeply regretful that like so many public services we are in a position where council tax is the only viable means of plugging the gap in our central funding.

"I'm very grateful, however, that the vast majority of the public are in support of this small rise to maintain our strong performance and keep our streets as safe as they can be as shown in my recent consultation survey.

"The current financial position is through no fault of our own and it is thanks to strong leadership and prudent resource management that we have been able to continue delivering excellent results, as evidenced by the outstanding grading from HMIC before Christmas.

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"I'm under no illusion that the coming year will continue to stretch our resources to capacity and put our workforce under immense pressure.

"Our people are our greatest asset and they have a proven track record of excelling in the face of adversity.

"The precept increase will go some way to protecting our dedicated team to continue their valued work keeping the public of Derbyshire safe."

The Police and Crime Panel will now consider and approve the budget.