Chairman thanks officers and staff as curtain comes down on police authority
THE curtain has been drawn on Avon and Somerset police authority after its last meeting was held in Portishead.
The authority will be replaced by a new Police and Crime Commissioner following an election next Thursday.
The outgoing chairman of the authority, Dr Peter Heffer, said at police HQ yesterday: "I would like to put on public record, in this meeting, the authority's thanks to the Chief Constable and his chief officers for their efforts and the mature and professional relationship we have had over the months and years.
"I would also like to commend the force for the way they have performed, with our help, during a very challenging change programme."
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He also thanked the police authority staff for their help and guidance during his tenure.
Addressing the authority, Chief Constable Colin Port said: "This authority has been independent-minded and scrutinising throughout. Sometimes we've found ourselves under the cosh as a consequence, but that's your job and we respect that.
"You have put the public first and put victims at the centre of everything we do and I think that's had a real effect on the way our officers and the public act.
"You have been advocates for the public, and more importantly for me, you have been advocates for the police."
On the agenda for the final meeting was a report on the constabulary's performance, presented by Deputy Chief Constable Rob Beckley.
Recorded crime in Avon and Somerset has continued to fall. Total crime is down 13.6 per cent year-on-year, with serious and violent crimes against the person down 22.5 per cent, and serious acquisitive crimes, including burglary, theft and robbery, down by 6.5 per cent.
The overall detection rate for crimes is up by 1.4 per cent to 36.3 per cent, which is 14th in the league table of the 43 police forces in England and Wales.