Today, in a written statement to the House of Commons, the Home Secretary, Theresa May, has accepted all but one of the recommendations of the Senior Salaries Review Board. The rumoured salaries of Police and Crime Commissioners of between £65,000 and £100,000 are therefore confirmed.
The salaries will continue to be reviewed by the Board, and the acceptance means that the Board’s discounting of the salaries because they are held by an elected, as opposed to an appointed, person has been accepted, though this undermines the job evaluation scheme which was used to evaluate the post.
The recommendation that was not accepted was the recommendation that the salary was based on a full-time role and should be reduced where it was part-time. There will now be no reduction where Commissioners have other roles, which will ease concerns expressed by some candidates.
TopOfTheCops.com welcomes the decision not to accept that recommendation. No-one should be under the illusion that Police and Crime Commissioner is a position to be pursued as a hobby – it will be both demanding and time-consuming. However, the idea that Commissioners with other roles will automatically deliver less of a service is one that should be challenged.
If a Commissioner has a business, should he give it up? If she is writing a book, may she not finish it? If he has represented some of his constituents as a Councillor for decades, must that come to an end? What if she has a young family? Should a Police and Crime Commissioner be punished for bringing any of these experiences to the job? Do we want to encourage a culture of nit-picking complaints about how much time a Commissioner spends doing this or that, rather than on how effective they are being?
Often we focus too much on how much time it takes to do something, and not on how much is done, or how well it is done. Maybe this is why things take so long to do? This decision is a step in the right direction.