Agenda item



[NOTE: Councillor S. Hancock had earlier declared an interest in this item.]



The Panel considered the Commissioner’s report on the proposed Police precept for 2024/2025. The Panel was advised that it could make the decision to either approve, reject, or veto the proposed precept at the meeting and thereafter had to issue a report on its decision to the Commissioner. The decision to approve or reject could be made by a simple majority while a veto vote had to be supported by a two-third majority of the entire Panel membership. This would imply that ten Panel Members present at the meeting would have to support the veto. It was further advised that, if the Panel chose to veto, the Commissioner would not be able to issue the proposed precept and would have to publish a response to the Panel’s report, indicating a different proposed precept, by the 15thFebruary 2023. The Panel would not be able to veto the revised proposed precept but could only decide to approve or reject it.


Councillor Keith Evans (Panel Lead on Finance) provided a presentation on the Panel’s Finance Subgroup’s scrutiny of the 2024/25 precept proposal.


He advised that the funding received by the Commissioner primarily comes from the Home Office grant settlement, with smaller contributions from Welsh Government and certain other grants. Home Office funding is dependent on maintaining a specific number of police officers and therefore, reducing the number of officers to make savings is not a realistic option.


Cllr. Evans advised that he commended the report, which proposed a precept increase of £1.62 per month on a Band D property equating to a 6.2% increase on the previous year. The precept offers value for money and is still the lowest in Wales. He thanked the Commissioner and Chief Constable for organising a finance seminar that supported scrutiny of the report.


The Panel thanked Cllr. Evans and the Commissioner for their detailed and informative reports.


In response to a query regarding resource within the force, the Commissioner informed members that the force was resource efficient.  There has been a 20% increase in staff resource across the force and substantial investment since 2016.  An internal consultation regarding changes to the operative model was currently ongoing.  The members were advised that a Retention Officer within the force, undertakes exit interviews with those leaving the force.  The Retention Officer interacts with officers, to better understand as to why officers may want to leave the force.


It was noted that the Commissioner had made representation regarding submissions on the Home Office funding formula deliberations at Westminster and the Senedd.


A query was raised concerning an increase in rural crime.  The Commissioner advised members of the Rural Crime Strategy within the force and of the Rural Crime team based in Cardigan.  The Commissioner advised that rural crime was an issue and that operations were active across the force area and urged the public to provide any information they thought relevant.


In response to a query regarding the Welsh Government withdrawing funds for the All Wales School Programme from 1st April, 2024, the Commissioner informed members that the programme would be provided until the election in May and work would be ongoing to review the future operating model and associated implications.


In response to a query, the Commissioner advised members that Police Community Support Officer’s (PCSO) do not have the same powers as Police Officers.  The members were informed that PCSO’s do have access to a Sergeant and Constable within Neighbourhood Policing Teams, to assist in difficult situations.


UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED that the Commissioner’s proposal to increase the Dyfed-Powys Police precept by 6.2% for 2024/25 be endorsed.


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