Posted by: westlancashirerecord | April 18, 2016

Grunshaw Or Pratt For PCC?

In the 2012 PCC election the turnout in West Lancashire was a pitiful 14.12%. Who cared who our PCC was?

Back in January 2016 the fight almost immediately got personal. Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw had to defend his use of a car paid for by the council taxpayer for his duties. It was reported that the arrangement was questioned by Andy Pratt, his Tory opponent in the May election for the £85,000 a year job.

It seems Mr Grunshaw’s staff brought in a revised senior police officers’ car scheme, which includes the £21,000 leased Hyundai, to the attention of the Joint Audit Ethics and Committee which scrutinises the Lancashire Police budget. His chief finance officer Steve Freeman told its December meeting “The Commissioner approved a revised scheme for the provision of cars to senior officers of the Office of the PCC and of the Constabulary in November 2013. Unfortunately the Office of the PCC has omitted to bring this decision to the committee for review and the committee is therefore asked to consider this scheme in retrospect. It should be noted that the scheme includes the provision of a car from the Constabulary fleet for the use of the PCC”.

The committee did not query the provision of the car, which costs £7,000 a year, for Mr Grunshaw who has not claimed mileage expenses since May 2014. Mr Pratt said “People need to ask pertinent questions about a number of things regarding spending and this car is a good example. If I’m successful in the election, that car will go back to the police fleet.” Perhaps he’ll get on his bike? andypratt [click to read]

Mr Grunshaw said “The nature of my role engaging with stakeholders across Lancashire’s 16 parliamentary constituencies means I need a car to get around. The car is procured for my use as Commissioner through a framework agreement and provides a value for money option in terms of helping me to get around the county. I introduced a new Chief Officer car scheme in 2013 and this saved £31,000 off the previous scheme. I pay tax on this as any other person with a work vehicle would do.” Clive-Grunshaw---Profile-Picture

In February Mr Grunshaw welcomed comments from inspectors who found Lancashire Constabulary is among the top performing police forces in the country. The report, published by HM Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC), praised the way the force keeps people safe in Lancashire. HMI Mike Cunningham said in his assessment of the force “I congratulate Lancashire Constabulary on its performance in keeping people safe and reducing crime.

“I am impressed by the way the force engages with the communities of Lancashire to understand their concerns, and by the way it works alongside partner organisations. The force’s Early Action approach is an illustration of its emphasis on tackling the root cause of problems. The force has made good progress in putting clear processes in place to identify repeat and vulnerable victims. It makes accurate assessments of the risks they face and its response to them is consistent. The quality of crime investigation is generally good and the force works well to stop reoffending. I am very impressed by the force’s approach to financial management. It has achieved its planned savings and is exceptionally well prepared to face future financial challenges. It has a good understanding of the main elements of demand and uses its resources well.

“I welcome the positive and supportive culture that has been instilled throughout the force by the continuing commitment of its senior leaders. The force gives careful consideration to the wellbeing of the workforce. Lancashire Constabulary uses an extensive and effective range of online methods to engage with the people of Lancashire. The force seeks and identifies improved practice from elsewhere and works with its partners to use new methods to predict, understand and prevent problems of local public concern. In the year ahead I will be particularly interested to see how the force improves compliance with the Best Use of Stop and Search scheme and develops more accurate recording of taser use. I’ll also be interested to see how the integration of public services across Lancashire progresses”.

People might wonder if they need a change of PCC? As with every aspect of our lives now it’s not what we get it’s how it’s paid for. Less policing because of central government austerity means bringing out the begging bowl to ask for extra precepts.


Responses

  1. Clive Grunshaw’s swift intervention regarding the lack of police 999 response in Halsall was excellent and appreciated by the residents. Note that our present councillor who was a policewoman for 20yrs did nothing! There’s enough pratts to vote for on May 5th, I don’t think I could vote for another.

    • Well, perhaps your present councillor might be applying for reinstatement to the police after 5 May?


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