Criminal rise by police authority
"MORNING guv! Nice county you've got 'ere. Shame if anything should happen to it, if you know what I mean! "Of course if you give us an extra 16 per cent of last year's fee I can make sure we keep you safe!"Has Suffolk Police Authority learned something from the criminals it catches? Is it trying to run the biggest protection racket in history?It's absolutely apalling that this unelected quango should use moral blackmail to try to put its demand from council tax payers up by 15.
"MORNING guv! Nice county you've got 'ere. Shame if anything should happen to it, if you know what I mean!
"Of course if you give us an extra 16 per cent of last year's fee I can make sure we keep you safe!"
Has Suffolk Police Authority learned something from the criminals it catches? Is it trying to run the biggest protection racket in history?
It's absolutely apalling that this unelected quango should use moral blackmail to try to put its demand from council tax payers up by 15.8pc next year.
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If it goes ahead with the rise, it will prove to everyone that it treats the households it seeks to protect with utter contempt.
The police authority wants to increase its budget (not its council tax demand) by almost 7.4pc.
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That's getting on for three times the current rate of inflation. The government thinks this is excessive - and many people struggling with wage or pension rises of a third of that may agree.
The government is increasing its grant to the police by 2.9pc, still over inflation, but to achieve the authority's ambition of employing more officers, it needs to increase our bills by 15.8pc.
The county council has woken up this year and realised that an excessive hike isn't acceptable and has brought in a rise of 3.9pc.
Districts have worked hard and across the county are proposing rises of between 2.8 and 5pc.
But the message hasn't got through to the police authority - hardly surprising as half of them (including the chairwoman) are unelected.
The justification, that Suffolk wants and needs more and more officers, is frankly childish.
It uses a slavish devotion to opinion polls as a way of justifying its increase - while ignoring the fact that people lie to opinion pollsters, especially on the subject of money!
Suffolk is one of - if not THE safest county in the country. Why does the authority want to scare people into believing it has to spend ever more money on protection?
Why is it necessary to have more police officers in Suffolk than ever before? Is it that the Authority, like Sir Humphrey Appleby, regards the number of people you employ as the ultimate sign of success or failure?
And the Suffolk Police Authority seems gutless as well as profligate.
Last week, before its agenda for tomorrow's meeting was posted, it sent out a press release going on about its public consultation exercise.
It made no mention of the fact that it was considering a 15.8pc council tax increase.
That only became apparent when the authority's papers arrived the next day - and they did their best to hide the actual figure.
Did they think the media would be too lazy or too stupid to find the figure?
I'm just relieved that while they can't seem to run a budget, at least the Authority seems to be able to employ police officers and support staff who know what they're doing.