The Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) has a team of staff known as the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC).
The PCC is an elected position but the OPCC is a non-political, impartial organisation and its head of paid service is the Chief Executive Officer. The OPCC is a completely separate organisation to Devon and Cornwall Police.
The Police and Crime Commissioner and their office do a number of things including:
Carrying out their statutory functions legally and openly, such as:
- Appointing a Chief Constable.
- Writing and publishing a police and crime plan (which sets the police’s priorities).
- Checking how the police is performing and supporting the Chief Constable to improve policing.
- Holding the Chief Constable to account for running an effective police force.
- Managing schemes to help the PCC check and challenge the police, such as the Independent Custody Visitor Scheme, Scrutiny Panels and Police Misconduct Panel Chairs.
- Giving the Police and Crime Panel the information they need to carry out their role.
- Making sure that the Police and Crime Plan is delivered on time and within budget.
- Making sure that decisions are made properly and published so that the public can understand how their police force is being governed.
- Making sure that certain information is published by law, such as an Annual Report, Statement of Accounts and Treasury Management Strategy.
- Writing policies and strategies so that the police (and sometimes others) can focus their efforts and get things done.
- Commissioning project and other interventions to deliver specific things (e.g. helping local councils to improve their CCTV systems).
- Working with other PCCs at a regional and national level when it makes sense to do things together.
- Lobbying the government about the policing and community safety needs of Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.
- Responding to Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabularies and Fire and Rescue Services when they inspect Devon and Cornwall Police.
- Dealing with Freedom of Information requests.
- Processing complaints against the Chief Constable’s and the PCC’s own personal conduct.
- Checking that the police complaints process (the whole process and not individual complaints) is working properly.
- Having a statutory 151 officer responsible for the funding of Revenue and Capital, along with responsible for Treasury Management which includes borrowing.
- Various financial responsibilities (to find out more visit our Code of Corporate Governance).
Talking with and listening to the public and the media, such as:
- Being professional and helpful to the public and stakeholders who contact the PCC and the office with enquiries.
- Keeping a record of the types of issues that customers and stakeholders are writing to the PCC about to help inform our work.
- Organising and attending a large number of community engagement events throughout Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. You can find out where they are on our events pages.
- Asking the public what they think about a whole range of policing and safety issues to help inform the PCC before they make decisions.
- Making sure that the views of the public and stakeholders are included in the PCC’s Police and Crime Plan.
- Speaking with our partners in the media and making sure that they have the information they need.
- Communicating with the public through regular features with the media such as radio interviews and newspaper blogs.
- Putting information out about the work of the PCC and the office in a wide variety of formats (e.g. using social media and print media).
- Making sure that our website contains the information that it should be law, and other information that may be of interest to the public and our stakeholders.
- Talking with councillors regularly through our Councillor Advocate Scheme.
Investing public money in important services and working with others to keep communities safe and support victims, such as:
- Investing over £5 million on vital services that help victims of crime, and help those who commit crimes to stop.
- Checking that the services the Police and Crime Commissioner is funding are really making a difference to people’s lives because it’s not just good enough to spend public money, it’s important for the commissioner to know that money is being used properly.
- Working with other organisations to find out if there are ways of working differently together to reduce the likelihood of offenders committing more crimes.
- Working with established partnerships such as Community Safety Partnerships who have the local knowledge to know where funds should be spent to meet specific needs.
- Supporting groups who may need some help in applying for big pots of national money for a specific project.
Deciding the council tax precept and setting the police budget, such as:
- Deciding how much the policing part of the council tax precept should be (i.e. the part of the council tax bill that funds the police) to maintain a resilient police service for the benefit of Devon and Cornwall residents.
- Working with the Chief Constable to create a financial strategy which says what the police will be spending money on and why.
- Owning and managing the police estate, such as:
- Making sure that the police have the right type of buildings that they need, in the right places.
- Maintaining the estate so that it is safe to use.
- Working to reduce the carbon footprint of the police estate.
- Selling properties or land that the police don’t use anymore.
- Working with other public sector organisations to explore if the police could have a presence in public buildings that aren’t police stations.
Maintaining good governance and business practices such as:
- Managing the office’s budget.
- Monitoring the office’s performance.
- Facilitating and administering meetings and training.
- Making sure that the office is safe and legal as an organisation, and has good policies and practices in place.