Monday, July 18, 2022

Nottinghamshire's speeding police commissioner should resign

Caroline Henry, the Conservative police and crime commissioner for Nottinghamshire, was today convicted of five speeding offences. 

She left court, the Nottingham Post reports, "with a total fine of £2,450, an order to pay a victim surcharge of £190, prosecution costs, and a six-month driving ban".

The five separate offences were committed across the county in only four months and Caroline Henry is the wife of the Tory MP for Broxtowe, Darren Henry.

I have never warmed to elected police and crime commissioners. They are, along with elected mayors and the ever-expanding number of government "tsars", part of a move away from a political system based on compromise between competing interests towards one where strong individuals "bang heads together" and "get things done".

It's no surprise that the PCC role was the idea of the Brexity right of the Conservative Party. It's leading advocates were Douglas Carswell and Daniel Hannan.

Hannan liked to call them "sheriffs". He must have had a cowboy outfit when he was little.

But this is the system we have and it's clear to me that Caroline Henry must resign her role, for which she is paid more than £76,000 a year.

Her damp-eyed pleading that she should not receive a driving ban suggests she intends to cling on, but if she tries she will look ridiculous. 

How can she now have any credibility chairing her new "accountability board" and scrutinising the police?

You may not be surprised to learn that:
On her official PCC website, Henry, listed ensuring an "effective and efficient" police response to speeding as one of her priorities. 
She campaigned for election using the slogan "Make Notts Safe" and promised to "reduce crime with action, not words".
It's time for her to worry less about other's people's behaviour and more about her own. She should resign.

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