Thursday, June 25, 2015

Police and crime commissioner model cannot survive a bad back

Sir Clive Loader, Leicestershire police and crime commissioner, is suffering from severe back pain and will have to step down from the role for a while.

I wish a swift and full recovery. But his plight has displayed a weakness of the PCC system: who takes his place?

The Leicester Mercury explains:
Under the law the police and crime panel must appoint an acting commission - for a maximum of six months - from a member of his staff.
However, the panel was not keen on the idea:
Sir Clive asked the panel to pick Paul Stock, the chief executive of the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC), as his successor. 
He said Mr Stock was willing to take on the role. 
The police and crime panel however has not followed Sir Clive's wishes. 
Newly re-elected panel chairman Joe Orson said he hoped Sir Clive would make a speedy recovery but said he was concerned the law only allowed for his replacement to be a member of his staff. 
He said the Home Office would be lobbied to change the law so that only an unelected official could assume the role.
I suspect Mr Stock said "an elected official", though what he or she would have to have been elected to is not clear.

All this shows the weakness of the PCC model. Invest all the authority in one elected person and you have a problem if they fall ill/

The old police authorities would have dealt with such a crisis without breaking step.

But then the style of politics they represented - compromise, reconciling different interest groups - is out of fashion.

Now it is all about czars who will Bang Heads Together and Get Things Done.

Just pray your czar does not get a bad back.

1 comment: said...

What evidence exists for this bad back? How did it creep up?

If he'd been on JSA Iain Duncan Smith would have him sanctioned and on sickness - I'd lay a sizeable bet ATOS would have had him back to work by next week.