A POLICE budget which adds an inflation-busting 6.4 per cent to its portion of council tax bills has been passed.
West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), Simon Foster, asked the West Midlands Police and Crime Panel to increase the policing council tax ‘precept’ for the year ahead.
For a Band D property it has increased by £13 for the year, which amounts to £1.08 a month for 2024/25.
The PCC says this is to maintain police officer and staff numbers and keep the people of the West Midlands safe and secure.
The PCC added the amount West Midlands Police raises per household from council tax, for a Band D property, will continue to be the second lowest in England at £215.55. The West Midlands local police precept will also be more than £53 per year cheaper than neighbouring police forces.
Mr Foster said: “Passing this budget means we are able to continue to put more neighbourhood police officers into our communities. People told me that they wanted preventative, proactive, problem solving and visible police officers out on the streets, keeping people, families, businesses and communities, safe and secure.
“This budget will enable West Midlands Police to deliver for the people of the West Midlands.
“The harsh reality is that once again the government has provided us with a stark choice. Increase the Council Tax police precept or face yet further cuts to policing.
“It is important to understand that the government’s Funding Settlement assumes that every Force will increase its precept, in accordance with the maximum flexibility it has provided for.
“The effect of this is that the government is to all intents and purposes, mandating an increase in the precept. This also illustrates that the government settlement does not maintain the baseline funding that West Midlands Police needs to operate on a day to day basis, to deliver an effective and efficient police service.”