Cross-party working group to reconsider council funding for PCSOs

Proposed cuts to council funding for Bristol’s PCSOs are to be re-considered, it has been announced.

A cross-party working group chaired by Councillor Gus Hoyt, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and the Environment is to look again at the issue. The move is in response to expressions of concern by the community as well a request by the Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner, Sue Mountstevens.

The mooted savings are part of a package of budget proposals that were announced by the Mayor George Ferguson earlier this month. The cross-party working group, which was set up last week, is developing proposals to try and retain as many PCSOs in Bristol as possible.

Councillor Hoyt said: “We have been consulting with the police as part of the review in an effort to find a way forward. There is recognition, of course, of the role PCSOs play in tackling crime and the fear of crime in our communities.

“But at the same time we face tough choices when it comes to making savings in the current climate of increased financial pressures.

“It has been an extremely informative and constructive process and I am confident that we will be able to deliver fresh proposals that will be in the best interests of the public that the Mayor can discuss with Sue Mountstevens.

The working group includes Councillors Doug Naysmith, Pete Levy and Alastair Watson and will make recommendations to the Mayor within the next week in advance of final budget proposals being agreed.

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