Crime commissioner addresses Pocklington Annual Town Meeting

Police commissioner Keith Hunter.
Police commissioner Keith Hunter.

Humberside Police and Crime Commissioner Keith Hunter gave a presentation and answered questions from members of the public at the Annual Town Meeting in Pocklington.

Mr Hunter first outlined the role of the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC).

The PCC is elected every four years,and he is in to his third year. The commissioner is the town’s representative and holds the chief constable to account for the performance of the local force.

The annual budget for the Police and Crime Commissioner is £190 million and he commissions the policing, community safety and victim support services. The policing includes both the local force and paying for services shared with other forces such as the serious crime investigations which is responsible for investigating criminal gangs.

Some of the other shared services are underwater search and serious traffic accident investigations.

He informed the meeting that the number of police officers has risen from 1,420 in 2016 to 1,900 but it is still below the 2,800 that Humberside had in 2008 before cuts by central Government were imposed.

The force still receives 70% of its income from the Home Office Grant with the other 30% coming from the police precept levied as part of the council tax bill. The current targets for crime is to decrease violent crime and anti-social behaviour.

The force is tackling child/young people exploitation and modern day slavery which is mostly undertaken by gangs from cities that are targeting more rural areas of the country.

A resident asked about the planning application for the new prison at Full Sutton.

The commissioner hasn’t been asked for his views but doesn’t think it is the right place to build a prison given the lack of local infrastructure such as the roads and public transport. He also said that Yorkshire doesn’t need a new Category C prison.

A resident asked about community safety and why the community was having to fill some of the gaps created by the cuts. In rural villages training is being provided to members of the public to use speed cameras.

Mr Hunter commented about the lack of communication and engagement from East Riding of Yorkshire with its Parish and Town Councils. He also confirmed the plan to sell the town’s police station and move in with the fire service.

The East Riding Community Safety Partnership has funding to allocate to community and charitable organisations for projects to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour.

There were 62 people resent at the meeting. Other issues discussed were the Neighbourhood Plan and Highway issues.