The Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 introduced significant changes in police governance and accountability. Police Authorities were replaced by directly elected Police and Crime Commissioners. On 5 May 2016, voters elected Mr Philip Seccombe to serve until May 2020 as Warwickshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner. The Commissioner has responsibility for the way policing is delivered in the county and will hold the Chief Constable to account for running the force. The Commissioner will decide how funding related to policing and crime reduction is allocated and set the strategic direction and objectives of the force through his Police and Crime Plan. For further information about the Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner, please visit the Commissioner’s web site.
The Warwickshire Police and Crime Panel has been established to scrutinise and support the work of the Commissioner. The Commissioner will be required to consult with the Panel on his plans for policing, as well as the precept (the money collected from council tax for policing) and certain key appointments. Warwickshire County Council is the host local authority for the Panel and will provide administrative and other support to the Panel and its members. All agendas, reports and minutes from previous Panel meetings are available.
Membership of the Panel 2016/17
The Warwickshire Police and Crime Panel is comprised of 10 elected members and 2 independent members. The elected members can be found online (by selecting the members tab).
Roles and Responsibilities of the Panel
The Police and Crime Panel holds the Police and Crime Commissioner to account by acting as a ‘critical friend’. Its role is to scrutinise, challenge and support the Commissioner, maintaining a check and balance on the performance of the Commissioner in regards to the strategic actions and decisions made. The Panel is not responsible for holding the Chief Constable or the Constabulary to account and is not a replacement for the Police Authority. The Panel scrutinises the actions and decisions of the Commissioner, not the performance of the police force. The Panel’s powers include:
- Reviewing and making a report with recommendations on the draft Police and Crime Plan (or a variation of it) which the Commissioner must take account of and respond to;
- Reviewing and making a report on the Commissioner’s annual report, which will outline performance against the targets set in the Police and Crime Plan;
- Holding confirmation hearings for the proposed appointment of important staff working for the Commissioner, such as the Chief Executive, Chief Financial Officer and Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner (if one is appointed). The Panel cannot refuse appointments but can make recommendations to the Commissioner;
- Hold confirmation hearings in relation to the appointment of a Chief Constable by the Police and Crime Commissioner. The Panel has the power to make a report on and, if appropriate and agreed by a sufficient majority, veto the proposed appointment;
- Monitoring relevant non-criminal complaints against the Commissioner;
- The consideration of the Commissioner’s proposed precept level (the money collected from council tax for policing). The Panel has the power to make a report on and, if appropriate and agreed by a sufficient majority, veto the proposed precept level. The Panel can also recommend that the precept should be higher or lower than proposed;
- Requesting the Commissioner and the Commissioner’s staff to attend Panel meetings to answer questions;
- Scrutinising the decisions of the Commissioner; and
- Making reports and recommendations on any action or decision of the Commissioner.
All Panel meetings are held in public. The relationship between the Panel and Commissioner ensures transparency and openness in the strategic decision making of police services throughout Warwickshire.
A copy of the Warwickshire Police and Crime Panel Annual Report 2015/16, which highlights the activities and achievements of the previous 12 months, is attached.
Public Participation in the Police and Crime Panel
Anyone who either works or lives in Warwickshire can ask a question at meetings of the Panel, at which a 30-minute window will be designated to hearing from the public. The Police and Crime Commissioner will also be attending the meetings and welcomes questions from the public. If you’d like to participate, please read the Warwickshire Police & Crime Panel – Public Question Time Scheme (PDF, 18.31 KB) and submit your question to firstname.lastname@example.org in advance of the meeting. In addition, the Panel holds its meetings around the county, to make it easier for the public to access.
The future meetings and venues are:
- 3 February 2017 at Shire Hall, Warwick (CV34 4RL)
- 23 March 2017 at Elizabeth House, Stratford (CV37 6HX)
- 22 June 2017 at Shire Hall, Warwick (CV34 4RL)
- 14 September 2017 at a location to be confirmed
All Panel meetings start at 11am, unless otherwise stated. Further details for each meeting are available.
For complaints about the Police and Crime Commissioner or Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner please address any correspondence to :
Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner
3 Northgate Street
Tel No. 01926 412118
For complaints about a member of the Warwickshire Police and Crime Panel, please address any correspondence to
Warwickshire County Council
PO Box 9
Tel No. 01926 412564