Cllr Will Windsor-Clive is an Gloucestershire county councillor and the Conservative candidate for Police and Crime Commissioner in Gloucestershire.
Our policing in Gloucestershire, and who it’s accountable to, really matters. Every part of our public services have to make savings to help repair the damage that Labour did to our country’s economy. That doesn’t mean that we need to see the policing we depend on getting worse.
We need good Conservative management to get taxpayers’ value for money, whilst making sure that Gloucestershire Police are there when we need them.
This is something that every small and medium business in our county has had to face: how to do things more effectively; how to deliver what the customer wants at a cost they can afford. It’s certainly something I’ve faced many times in my business career. It’s also something I’ve faced as a councillor.
Since 2007, I’ve been in charge of Gloucestershire’s Fire and Rescue service. In that time, we’ve reduced the budget, whilst protecting key services. We saved money by joining up services with the County Council and making the most of the £500m in buying power. At the same time, we have provided benefits to the council – for example, using firefighters to check on older people at risk.
At the moment, the cross party committee of councillors who scrutinise Gloucestershire’s Police and Crime Commissioner can’t even get a straight answer as to the cost of running things today. We think our police might be as much as £1m over budget this year – but the Commissioner won’t share the figures.
That just shows the problem of electing a former policeman to the role – his loyalties to his former colleagues mean taxpayers aren’t given the priority they should be.
Things need to change. We need to be smarter about the way policing is run in this county. We need to join the police back-office up with other public sector bodies to free up money for frontline policing.
We need to really hold the Chief Constable to account. It’s for these reasons that I’ve put my hat in the ring as the Conservative candidate for Gloucestershire Police and Crime Commissioner. I was really proud to receive the support of so many party members at my selection – but the hard work has now begun in earnest.
I hope you will be able to give me your support, and that we can build on the great General Election result in Gloucestershire by winning the Police and Crime Commissioner elections. If you want to know more you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org