LETTER: Close scrutiny of PCC reports

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Some months ago, the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner proposed to increase her tax on residents by £4.95 per year (3.6 per cent) per band D household, claiming that the idea had been met with overwhelming approval from taxpayers.

Can anyone recall another time when a majority of taxpayers voted for a tax increase?

We now understand that less than 3,000 (0.2 per cent) of the local population responded to the consultation, which was hardly a ringing endorsement of the proposal.

Also, the PCC reported, at a Horsham meeting last year, that police numbers in Sussex had been increased by 200. When prompted, she acknowledged that this had been preceded by a reduction of 500, before she took office.

No doubt residents who are already paying for Neighbourhood Wardens, to compensate for reduced police presence, will be asking why they should now pay more, at a time when disposable incomes have fallen steadily for many years and when we hear many complaints about the lack of response to reported crimes.

So, it was good to see from your online report, that the PCC has been obliged to reduce her proposed tax increase by nearly half. Clearly, the PCC must find ways to reduce the cost/income ratio as everyone else has been doing, instead of relying on her monopoly position to milk residents, who have nowhere else to go for the service.

In light of the above, there is clearly a need for close scrutiny of all PCC reports, to ensure that the reality is fully exposed.

ROGER ARTHUR

(UKIP) Horsham district councillor for Chanctonbury ward and UKIP prospective parliamentary candidate for Horsham, North Street, Horsham