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Bill Longmore pledges council tax freeze
8:50am Tuesday 5th February 2013 in News
POLICE and crime commissioner Bill Longmore has pledged to freeze council tax bills this year - admitting a public outcry had helped make his mind up.
Last month West Mercia Police’s elected boss Mr Longmore raised the prospect of a two per cent rise from April, but since then more than 1,000 letters and emails have flooded into his office, with 70 per cent against it.
The force could have raked in £1.6 million from the increase, but decided against it following the correspondence.
Mr Longmore said: “We are trying to manage the finances so we’re not in a position where we have to put the council tax precept up.
“Many people said they didn’t want to see a rise so our conclusion was, let’s leave that money with people and not take it.
“We need to all go forward together, that includes the wider community and councils.”
The police only takes in 12 per cent of the council tax bill, with the rest going to the fire service, Worcestershire County Council and other district councils.
The council tax freeze is subject to feedback from the watchdog-style police and crime panel, which takes place later today.
The commissioner will take on board comments made by the panel before rubber stamping the precept level.