What are Police and Crime Commissioners?
There are 41 Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) responsible for overseeing police forces across England and Wales. There is no Police and Crime Commissioner in London, instead the Mayor of London has oversight of policing matters.
The first PCCs were elected in November 2012 and on 5 May 2016 new elections will be held.
Police and Crime Commissioners, are elected officials who oversee how crime is tackled in their area and aim to make sure the police are providing a good service. They are responsible for holding the Chief Constable and police force to account on behalf of the public. They are not police officers and do not make operational policing decisions – those continue to be made by Chief Constables. Rather, PCCs set the strategic foundations for policing in their area.
According to the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011, PCCs must:
- secure an efficient and effective police for their area;
- appoint the Chief Constable, hold them to account for running the force, and if necessary dismiss them;
- set the police and crime objectives for their area through a police and crime plan;
- set the force budget and determine the precept;
- contribute to the national and international policing capabilities set out by the Home Secretary; and
- bring together community safety and criminal justice partners, to
- make sure local priorities are joined up.