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Commissioner calls for "unfair" police cuts to stop

Police officers on the beat Credit: Calendar news

West Yorkshire's new Police and Crime Commissioner Mark Burns-Williamson will challenge the Home Secretary’s decision to cut the county's policing budget by £100 million over the next four years when he meets Theresa May.

He was speaking ahead of a conference in London where he and the forty other new Police and Crime Commissioners will discuss policing with the Home Secretary.

Mark Burns-Williamson will argue the need to stop what he calls "unfair government cuts to policing" and the loss of 2,000 officer and civilian staff jobs in West Yorkshire by March 2015.

He says the 20% cuts being made nationally by the Tory led coalition are too far, and too fast. And that the slashing of the policing service by the coalition government means Police and Crime Commissioners are being forced to implement cuts they do not agree with.


Crime Commissioner calls for police spending cuts review

Newly elected Police & Crime Commissioner Mark Burns-Williamson met with Policing Minister Damien Green today to raise spending cuts and the implications for policing across West Yorkshire.

Speaking at the meeting, Mark said:

The Government spending cuts have already hit us hard and are going to hit harder here in West Yorkshire. We are one of the regions worse affected by the cuts and it is not right that, due to an unfair grant allocation, the safety of people across West Yorkshire is compromised in this way.

The Government needs to re-appraise the spending cuts as a matter of urgency and review the way the funding is allocated across the country. 800 front line police jobs are at risk across West Yorkshire and yet Surrey, in the South with much lower crime rates, is receiving funding for an extra 250.

– Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire Police & Crime Commissioner

He added:

Today I call on Damien Green to review the spending cuts to policing as a matter of urgency and to make sure at the very least he announces protection for future years’ Community Safety Funding in the Autumn Statement.

– Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire Police & Crime Commissioner

Prescott: I will be campaigning in my coffin

Lord Prescott (right), who lost out to Conservative Matthew Grove. Credit: Press Association

Lord Prescott has declared he will be "campaigning in his coffin" despite being defeated in last week's police and crime commissioner elections.

The former Hull East MP lost out to Conservative Matthew Grove in the race to become the first Commissioner for the Humberside Police force.

Speaking to the Hull Daily Mail, Lord Prescott said: "I don't think I'll stand for election again but I will forever be a politician and campaigner. It is who I am and the party I am in."

"I'm not going to be sitting around in my slippers. I will be campaigning in my coffin. This is the beauty of being in the Lords, I'm still involved politics."


Government denies failing to promote Police & Crime Commissioner elections

The Government has denied claims it didn't do enough to promote elections for Police and Crime Commissioners.

Last week seven new Commissioners were elected to oversee the seven police forces in our region. But fewer than one in five people actually went to the ballot box to vote. This afternoon one Lincolnshire MP told the Commons that major mistakes were made.

Gainsborough MP Edward Leigh questioned the Government's role in Parliament.

John Prescott: "I'm not standing again"

Lord Prescott has ruled out standing again as Police and Crime Commissioner for Humberside following his failure today to be elected for the role. He was beaten by Conservative Matthew Grove.

The veteran politician and former deputy prime minister to Tony Blair hoped to return to representing the public in the inaugural elections, after retiring as a Labour MP in 2010.

West Yorkshire vote: statistics

The West Yorkshire vote took account of first and second preference votes. the final count was between Labour's Mark Burns-Williamson and the independent candidate Cedric Christie. The final totals were as follows:

Mark Burns-Williamson (Labour) - 114,736 (61%) Cedric Christie (Independent) - 71,876 (39%)

The independent candidate Cedric Christie had picked up more second preference votes (22,577) than his Labour party rival (11,919) but it was not enough to give him more than 50% of the total vote.

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