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MP hits back at councillor's protest over police changes

Tuesday, 18th January 2011.

Haverhill MP Matthew Hancock has replied to a letter from town councillor Margaret Marks lashing out at the Government's plans for police commissioners, saying he agrees with the proposals.

Cllr Marks, who was elected as a Conservative but now sits as an Independent, told Mr Hancock she was 'speechless' when she heard details of the proposals at a presentation to Haverhill Town Council recently.

They mean Suffolk Police Authority, of which Cllr Marks husband Tim is a member, will be replaced by a single elected police and crime commissioner, who will appoint the chief constable, set the budget and formulate policy.

Cllr Marks said it meant 'a half-wit' could be elected to be in charge of the county's policing.

Mr Hancock said 'locally-elected people should represent the local people'.

"Of course operational decisions will rightly remain with the police themselves," Mr Hancock writes. "Elected commissioners will be there to ensure that policing follows the will of the people, instead of red tape.

"The savings from the costs imposed by Whitehall will more than offset the cost of holding elections.

"I think that it is the people of Suffolk who should be in charge of our police, not Whitehall.

"I do think it is very important that excellent candidates for the post put their names forward, and I have every confidence that the people of Suffolk will choose an excellent commissioner."

Haverhill Online News

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