The job of the Police and Crime Commissioner is to ensure the policing needs of their communities are met as effectively as possible, bringing communities closer to the police, building confidence in the system and restoring trust.
PCCs give the public a voice at the highest level, and give the public the ability to ensure their police are accountable.
This section outlines in more detail the role of the PCC and how it fits into the policing and criminal justice landscape.
Who does what in policing?
The below infographic explains the key functions of the PCC’s role and how it fits with other aspects of policing:
The job of the police and crime commissioner is to ensure the policing needs of their communities are met as effectively as possible, bringing communities closer to the police, building confidence in the system and restoring trust. Key aspects include:
Holding the Chief Constable to account for the performance of Warwickshire Police
Setting out a five year Police and Crime Plan, which can be refreshed every year
Setting the amount of Council Tax local people will pay towards policing (known as the Police Precept)
Set the annual budget for policing in Warwickshire
Present a budget to the Police and Crime Panel for scrutiny. The Police and Crime Panel have the authority to veto the proposed Police Precept
Attend the Police and Crime Panel meetings to answer questions and explain decisions
Regularly consult and involve the public and have regard to local authority priorities
Provide Community Safety Grants to individuals and organisations
Ensure victims and the most vulnerable are consulted
Publish an annual report
Work with partners to ensure an efficient and effective Criminal Justice system
Ensure Warwickshire Police delivers value for money
Appoint, and if necessary dismiss, the Chief Constable
It is not for the PCC to tell the professionals how to do their job – the legislation continues to protect the operational independence of the police by making it clear that the chief constables retain direction and control of the forces officers and staff. The operations of the police will not be politicised; who is arrested and how investigations work will not become political decisions.
PCCs are required to swear an oath of impartiality when they are elected to office. The swearing of an oath will be an important symbol of impartiality, emphasising both the significance of this new role in local communities and that PCCs are there to serve the people, not a political party or any one section of their electorate.
National responsibilities and local priorities
PCCs are responsible for the full range of policing work, including national responsibilities and local priorities.
In July 2012, the Home Secretary issued the Strategic Policing Requirement (SPR) which both the Police and Crime Commissioner and the Chief Constables must take into account when carrying out their roles.
The SPR focuses on those areas where the Government has a responsibility for ensuring that enough resources are in place to respond to serious crime that crosses boundaries and to support the work of national agencies such as the National Crime Agency. It does not cover areas where chief constables and police and crime commissioners are able to make effective local risk assessments.
The SPR determines national threats that the police must address, and the appropriate national policing capabilities that are required to counter those threats. These threats – terrorism, organised crime, public disorder, civil emergencies and cyber threats – evolve from local to national issues, often very quickly. They require a response firstly from local policing, with local forces playing their part on the local, regional and national stages.
PCCs are paid to do the job you elect them to do, though the salary they receive will differ depending on the police force they oversee. The range of salaries is aligned with pay received by chief constables, though it is not equal.
The range represents differences in the force weighting and policing challenges.
In Warwickshire, the Commissioner’s salary is set at £65,000 per year.