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Tony Hogg will not seek re-election as police and crime commissioner

Tony Hogg has today announced that he will not seek re-election as police and crime commissioner for Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly next May.

Tony talking with community sergeant Paul Jones in Woolacombe
Tony talking with community sergeant Paul Jones in Woolacombe

Mr Hogg, who was elected in November 2012, says he is proud of his achievements during 32 months in office.

“The vision of the PCC role at the 2012 election was undeveloped but I have been strongly motivated throughout because I know now that it is an essential role and the police have never been held to account so effectively - a view confirmed by Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary,” he said.

Mr Hogg has always been at pains to explain that police governance did not begin with the election of PCCs.

“The governance role of policing has been in place for 180 years in one form or another and, as PCC, I replaced the Police Authority,” he said.

“The Police Authority was a very different model primarily conducting scrutiny work. My team conducts a far wider ranging and deeper body of work put simply we are now delivering much more for less cost.

“For example, the police authority would not have conducted a fundamental review of the 101 service, transformed the police performance-reporting model, commissioned services from community safety providers or established a victim care unit – all big pieces of work achieved since I took office.

“And, based on Police Authority assumptions, we would have had less police officers by now.”

Mr Hogg says he is firmly focused on what he wishes to achieve in his remaining eight months of my term of office.

“I have three main priorities that will keep me working right up to the point that I handover to the next commissioner - improving police funding, effective community policing and the transformation of volunteering and the Special Constabulary,” he said. 

“My campaign to achieve fair funding for Devon and Cornwall Police in the annual policing grant forms a leading part of our plans to meet public sector savings targets.

 “Without approximately £12m that a fair formula would bring to Devon and Cornwall, much of what we currently take for granted will be at risk including neighbourhood policing and the connection the police have with the public.”

Before he hands over to a new commissioner Mr Hogg will be engaging in the development and implementation of a new policing model which Chief Constable Shaun Sawyer is in the process of producing.

“The demands on policing have changed: policing is not just about cutting crime through catching criminals (which is currently only 20% of police activity); the new threats of cybercrime and sexual and domestic violence and their investigation place very significant demands on the police,” he said.

“But resources on the ground will remain vital. Engaging with the public in our neighbourhoods for the purposes of identifying criminality, vulnerability and harm, and receiving all-important information is a fundamental part of policing.

“The available funding and the future model are inextricably linked - fair funding from Government will enable us to produce a more effective product.”

Mr Hogg’s final priority is to offer the public better opportunities to support the police through volunteering both as Special Constables and non-uniformed roles.

“This year we will launch significant schemes to attract members of the community who want to play a part in policing. Volunteering better links policing to the community, strengthens social capital and helps provide a visible presence,” he said.

Mr Hogg also has some thoughts for whoever talke his place in May.

“Firstly, whether standing for a political party or as an independent there is no place for party politics in this role.  I was elected as a Conservative but I have always ensured that party politics did not enter my considerations,” he said.

 “The best commissioners across the country are those who analyse the problem and come to a considered conclusion drawn from the facts and arguments not party political considerations.

“Finally, this is most certainly not a part-time job; pioneering will continue and it is vital that direction of policing is given the attention and resources it deserves.    

“It is a privilege and a pleasure to serve as police and crime commissioner. I will miss talking to the public, listening to those in other agencies and the voluntary sector who all do a fantastic job.

“Finally, I will miss spending time with police officers, PCSOs, police staff and my own team who do such a fantastic job often unrecognized and in difficult circumstances. “