Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

Big plans, bright future

Cleveland Police and Crime Panel Minutes

Date:
Thursday, 18th July, 2013
Time:
5.00 p.m.
Place:
Jim Cooke Conference Suite, Stockton Central Library, The Square, Stockton on Tees, TS18 1TU
 
Please note: all Minutes are subject to approval at the next Meeting

Attendance Details

Present:
Cllr Norma Stephenson OBE (Chairman), Cllr Charles Rooney (Vice-Chairman), Cllr Christopher Akers-Belcher, Cllr Chris Abbott, Geoff Baines, Gwen Duncan, Cllr George Dunning, Cllr Ian Jeffrey, Cllr Terry Laing, Cllr Steve Nelson, Cllr Hazel Pearson OBE, Cllr Bernie Taylor
Officers:
David Bond, Margaret Waggott, Michael Henderson (LD); Steven Hume (DNS)
In Attendance:
Barry Coppinger (Commissioner), Ed Chicken, Joanne Hodgkinson (Commissioner's Office), Chief Superintendent Glen Gudgeon (Cleveland Police)
Apologies for absence:
Cllr Ken Dixon, Cllr Carl Richardson
Item Description Decision
Public
PCP
19/13
EVACUATION PROCEDURE/MOBILE PHONES
 
PCP
20/13
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
 
PCP
21/13
MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 10 JUNE 2013
 
PCP
22/13
QUARTERLY PERFORMANCE REPORT (APRIL - JUNE 2013)
RESOLVED that:-

1. the information provided be noted.

2. the Commissioner provides further information to the Panel, as described above, relating to:

- Stop and search
- Independent Advisory Groups
- Anti-Social Behaviour
- Customer satisfaction
PCP
23/13
PROGRAMME OF ENGAGEMENT
RESOLVED that:

1. the report be noted.

2. the Panel receive an update report on restorative justice in 12 months.

3. the Commissioner arrange an event, for the Panel, relating to Strategic Policing
PCP
24/13
DECISIONS - POLICE AND CRIME COMMISSIONER
RESOLVED that the report and responses to queries be noted.
PCP
25/13
POLICE AND CRIME COMMISSIONER'S POLICE PROPERTY ACT FUND
RESOLVED that the report be noted.
PCP
26/13
SCRUTINY OF DISBANDMENT OF THE MOUNTED SECTION
RESOLVED that the report be noted.
PCP
27/13
POLICE AND CRIME PANEL SCRUTINY PROGRAMME
RESOLVED that the Work Programme described above be agreed and a report proposing a format for the review of the future of Probation Services be presented to a future meeting.
PCP
28/13
FORWARD PLAN
RESOLVED that the Plan be noted.
PCP
29/13
PUBLIC QUESTIONS
RESOLVED that the report be noted.
5pm/6.30pm

Preamble

ItemPreamble
PCP
19/13
The Chairman presented the Evacuation Procedures and reminded those present to turn off, or turn to silent, any mobile phone, or similar device, they might have with them.
PCP
20/13
Cllr Nelson declared a personal, non prejudicial interest in the item entitled Quarterly Performance Report (April - June 2013) as his son worked for Marks and Spencer as a security guard.
PCP
21/13
The minutes of the meeting held on 10 June 2013 were confirmed as a correct record and were signed by the Chairman.
PCP
22/13
Members considered a report that provided an update of performance scrutiny undertaken by the Police and Crime Commissioner during the period April - June 2013.

The Panel was reminded of the Commissioner's priorities, as set out in the Police and Crime Plan 2013/17, and was provided with an overview of performance against each priority.

High level Crime statistics were detailed for the Panel and Members were signposted to the Commission's web site, which included further statistics.

Members discussed the information provided and the following issues were highlighted:

- Reference was made to public confidence in Cleveland Police remaining stable at 87%, which was considered to be very good. However, concerns were expressed that a recent inspection report indicated that Cleveland was second only to the Met in terms of the number of times Stop and Search powers were being used. Members asked for further information on this matter and figures for Cleveland including a demographic of those people who had been subject to the use of the power.

Discussion continued and reference was made to Independent Advisory Groups and an apparent lull in their activity. The Commissioner
indicated that he would provide a report on this to the next meeting.


- Members asked for a breakdown of satisfaction surveys and any peer group comparator information that could be provided.

- It was noted that shoplifting was increasing and it was suggested that this may be a symptom of the economic climate. There were also concerns about reports of gangs of East European criminals targeting retail outlets in the north of the country. The Panel noted that the Commissioner had visited a number of retail firms and always encouraged them to do more to help the situation; however, it was felt that there was a degree of complacency exhibited by some firms. It was reported that some stores had had success by barring known offenders from their stores. It was confirmed that the Police were aware of the gangs of east European criminals who targeted high value electronic items. The Police had been very successful in arresting members of these gangs.

- The Panel asked for data on incidents of reported Anti-Social Behaviour and how the Police responded to such incidents.
PCP
23/13
Members considered a report that provided an update in relation to meetings attended by the Police and Crime Commissioner from May 2013 - 1 July 2013. In addition future meetings of the Commissioner were summarised.

The Panel noted that the Commissioner had visited 64 out of the 82 wards across the Cleveland Area. The Panel was informed of a number of meetings the Commissioner had attended, including:

- weekly scrutiny meetings with the Chief Constable.

- the launch of the safer Middlesbrough Partnership Restorative Justice Event. This event linked in with the Commissioner's objective of diverting people from offending with a focus on rehabilitation and the prevention of reoffending.

- visits to retail premises across the Cleveland area and speaking at the Federation of small businesses conference.

- a Farm Watch meeting to listen to the views of residents living within rural and farming communities across Cleveland.

- an Association of Chief Police Officers National Security Briefing.

- the first internal formal scrutiny meeting, which provided the Commissioner with an update in relation to Community Safety Grants.

- a violence against women consultation event, hosted by the Commissioner.

- an event to hear the concerns of the refugee and asylum seeker community

- a disability hate crime summit to consult with stakeholders

The Panel also received details of future engagements and meetings of the Commissioner.

The Panel discussed the report and raised question relating to:

- the Commissioner's work with regard to restorative justice. The Panel received a brief overview of the reasons for a restorative justice approach and the work being undertaken. The Panel asked if it could receive an update in 12 months.

- the refugee and asylum seeker community event. The Panel asked what the main concerns of the community had been. The Commissioner explained that, often, people had a very negative view of the police because of experiences they had had in their own country, for example harassment. Other concerns included issues with local housing providers and personal security.

During consideration of the report the Commissioner suggested that it may be useful to organise an event, relating to Strategic Policing, explaining how this worked at a local level and a national level and how they interrelated.
PCP
24/13
The Panel received a report that provided an update in relation to decisions made by the Police and Crime Commissioner between 20 May 2013 and 1 July 2013.

Members raised queries with regard to the following decisions:

- Decision required on stage 2 transfers

Members asked for more information on this decision. The Panel
noted that Stage one had taken place in November 2012 when all
police staff transferred from the Police Authority to the
Police and Crime Commission (except for police officers). The
Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 had created two
Corporations Sole, the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) and the
Chief Constable. Stage two was the statutory transfer of staff
from the PCC to the Chief Constable and needed to be completed by
1 April 2014. The Commissioner explained that he had taken the
view that all staff within his office should remain his
responsibility and all other staff should be the responsibility of
the Chief Constable.

- Approval of the Emergency Boarding and Glazing Services Contract

Members noted that the contract across the Cleveland area had been
awarded to one contractor and brief details of the relative costs
were provided.

- Approval of Section 106 Agreement in relation to Cleveland Police
Headquarters, Ladgate Lane

It was noted that this decision related to the approval of the
payment to have the section 106 agreement drawn up.

- Agree the new pay model following Job Evaluation

The Commissioner explained that he would undertake full
consultation with the unions on this matter and the objective was
to be cost neutral.
PCP
25/13
Members considered a report relating to the establishment of the Police and Crime Commissioner's Police and Property Act Fund.

It was explained that the Police and Property Act Fund had been created from the proceeds of sale of goods recovered by the police that could not be returned to their original owner. In accordance with the Police Property Act Regulations (1997) all awards from the fund must be for charitable purposes.

The Commissioner and Chief Constable would consider applications from local voluntary and community groups which were working for charitable purposes to improve the lives of people in the Cleveland Police Force area.

The Panel was provided with details of the guidance on how to apply and application forms. It was explained that a summary of charitable causes supported would be available on the Commissioner's website and would be communicated to the Police and Crime Panel as part of the Commissioner's annual reporting requirement.
PCP
26/13
Members received an update relating to the Chief Constable's decision to disband the Cleveland Mounted section.

Appended to the update was a report prepared by the Chief Constable, which set out the issues she had considered in coming to her decision.

The Commissioner explained that he had undertaken appropriate scrutiny; including public consultation and the Panel noted the process he had followed in this regard.

The Commissioner indicated that all concerns that had been very carefully considered in arriving at the decision that Cleveland did not need a mounted section.

The Commissioner explained that he had met with long-term volunteers from Ormesby Hall, who were attempting to raise the 550k each year, for the next 3 years, to maintain the section. The initial deadline for the funding to be in place had passed, however, this deadline had been extended to the end of August.

Members discussed the report and specific reference was made to the following:

- It was noted that the majority of the annual running costs of the section was associated with the sergeant and 6 constables working there (433k). The remaining costs included the staff that looked after the horses, the lease on the stables, feed, tack, equipment etc.

- Police Officers currently deployed to the mounted section would , in future, work in neighbourhood and high risk, priority areas of policing.

- there were alternative tactical options to using mounted police officers at football matches. Each match was considered on an individual basis but if a mounted officer presence was considered necessary it could be obtained, if available, from nearby forces, at a cost of 1600. Reflecting on the previous football season, only one football match in the area would have been categorised as needing to have mounted officers present.

The Panel considered that the scrutiny of the decision had been very robust. Members understood many of the concerns expressed and the emotional aspect of the decision but recognised how, in the current economic climate, it was necessary to make savings and target resources at priority areas.
PCP
27/13
The Panel received a report relating to scrutiny review topics for 2013/14.

The Panel agreed the following Scrutiny Work Programme for 2013/14:

Independent Advisory Group - report to Panel from the Commissioner

Management of Police Hours - report to Panel from the Commissioner

Work in Schools - Task and Finish sub group of the Panel consisting of:

Cllr Norma Stephenson
Cllr Hazel Pearson
Cllr George Dunning
Cllr Carl Richardson
Gwen Duncan

Drug Treatment/Substance Misuse Intervention in Police Custody - officer reporting in.

Shared Services - report to the Panel from the Commissioner

Energy efficiency in the changes and use of buildings and procurement and use of vehicles - report to the Panel from the Commissioner

The future of Probation Services - the format of the review to be considered and the subject of a further report to the Panel.

Overall Budget Strategy - Full Review by sub group from the Panel consisting of

Cllr Terry Laing
Cllr Ian Jeffrey
Cllr Christopher Akers-Belcher
Cllr Charles Rooney
Geoff Baines

It was noted that, where appropriate, scopes and project plans would be developed, sub group meetings arranged and reports programmed into the Panel's Forward Plan.

Members also considered Complaints and Crime levels as potential scrutiny review topics. The Panel agreed that it would not undertake a review in these areas, at this time.
PCP
28/13
Members were provided with the Panel's Forward Plan
PCP
29/13
The Panel received a report relating to Public Questions.

Members were reminded of the agreed procedure for considering questions, on notice, and noted that no such questions had been received for this meeting.

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