Police and Crime Commissioner role to combine with the Mayoralty

It has been confirmed negotiations to combine the roles of the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) and the Mayor of the West Midlands will begin.

The PCC currently sets the police budget, council tax precept, strategic direction of West Midlands Police and holds the Chief Constable to account.

The Mayor and PCC have been in talks for some time and today's announcement confirms negotiations can officially begin. The current arrangements will remain in place until at least May 2020.

The upcoming talks will take place to ensure the operational independence of the Chief Constable is maintained. They will also focus on ensuring the police continue to be held to account by a single elected representative rather than by using the old-style costly Police Authority committee system. 

Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson said: "The Mayor has been working closely with me on many issues.

"We have committed to starting a project in the new year to ensure policing in the West Midlands maintains strong democratic leadership, preserves the operational independence of the Chief Constable, whilst also ensuring clear lines of accountability.

"It is important we don't revert to a model akin to the old-style committee system of the Police Authority.

"The public of the West Midlands want to be reassured that the powers of the Mayor are sufficient to take on the role of the PCC."