THE Police and Crime Commissioner is asking residents in Barnsley if they will be willing to pay more in their council for policing services.

Alan Billings, the South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner is appealing for people across the borough to take part in survey to get views.

He is able to decide how much to spend on policing in South Yorkshire and propose a precept - the amount people contribute through council tax.

The precept raised 25 per cent of what is needed and the remaining 75 per cent comes from government grants.

He is now seeking people’s views to raise the precept.

“In order to further strengthen and improve the existing police service over the coming year, improve how you contact the force and safeguard and protect people better, including victims of crime, I will need to increase the council tax precept,” he added.

“The government allows me to do that up to a maximum of £10 on a Band D property and assumes that the full amount will be raised locally in all its calculations about what is available for policing in South Yorkshire.

“Whilst I recognise the difficulties faced by families in the current climate during the ongoing pandemic, I have to balance that against the need for increasing officer numbers to ensure that communities are kept safe, that criminals are arrested, investigated and brought to justice, that crime is prevented from happening in the first place and that victims of crime are fully supported.

“I believe, therefore, that I will have to set a precept close to what the government is allowing.

“Even so, in order to balance the books, I will still have to ask the force to make significant savings.

“In order to help me do this I am seeking your views to find out if you are willing to pay a little bit more, and if so, how much more.

“If I raise the council tax precept by the maximum £10 this will allow for the increased investment and improved services.”

Click here to complete the survey.