The South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner has increased the council tax precept for policing to the maximum permitted by the Government.

This is £24 per year for a Band D property. However, most householders in South Yorkshire are not in Band D but in Bands A and B, where the rise equates to £16 and £18.

Dr Alan Billings, South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner said:  “I have increased the amount that residents in South Yorkshire pay in council tax precept for policing because I felt I had little choice if we are to meet the challenges the force is currently facing. Council tax payers should not be making up for the failures of government to fund police forces adequately and this is not something that can be repeated at this level in future years.

“I am using the increase to add 55 police officers to the force over and above the current numbers. This will be the first time police officer numbers have risen since 2010. Forty of these officers will go into neighbourhood teams to help restore neighbourhood policing.

“My office consulted with over 1,500 residents within SouthYorkshire. Over 70% were willing to pay more for policing provided that they saw an increase in the number of police officers in their neighbourhoods.

“I appreciate that families are struggling in these times of austerity and it was not an easy decision to make.

“South Yorkshire have a number of legacy issues where we are dealing with compensation claims. To pay for this we are requesting help from the government.  I need to demonstrate to the government that I have utilised all resources available to me before the government will entertain helping us with these costs.

“South Yorkshire Police is now moving in the right direction, with the most recent HMICFRS Inspection rating the force as good.  The residents of South Yorkshire, should now start to see a return on their investment in to their local police force.”

Residents of South Yorkshire are currently receiving their council tax bills in the post.  A breakdown of the policing part of their council tax precept is detailed on the bill.