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Police commissioner makes case for precept rise because of ‘Savile effect’

16:50 31 January 2014

Stephen Bett. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY

Stephen Bett. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY

Archant Norfolk

Taxpayers in Norfolk look set to face a council tax increase after councillors failed to come to a conclusion on a proposed 1.97pc hike in the police precept.

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Stephen Bett, the police and crime commissioner for Norfolk, put forward the proposals at a police and crime panel meeting today.

However, councillors could only resolve to send a letter urging Mr Bett to reconsider his proposals after a motion to veto and then approve the plans was not passed.

A public consultation resulted in 53pc of the 1,020 respondents voting in favour of an almost 2pc increase in the police precept of Norfolk’s council tax bills for 2014/15.

However, the eight councillors at the Norfolk police and crime panel were unable to come to a majority decision and concluded with writing a letter.

Mr Bett said: “There was no debate - it was one of the most embarrassing things I have been to. I will consider their proposal, but there is a definite need for it [a council tax rise].”
“The [Jimmy] Savile effect is having a big draw on resources. There has been a rise in reports of rapes and sexual assaults. If you are researching something that is 40 years old, we need specialist people to deal with those cases and that is the same with children and domestic violence and sexual assaults. It is very specialist and we want to concentrate extra money on demand to support vulnerable people.”

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