The Police and Crime Panel is part of the national arrangements for police governance established by the Police and Reform Social Responsibility Act. In each Police force area there is:
- an elected Police and Crime Commissioner.
- a Police and Crime Panel which is made up of elected members from the ten authorities in the Avon and Somerset Police area, plus representatives of the public.
Police and Crime Panel meetings
The Police and Crime Panel is run by Somerset County Council.
Meetings and agendas
Visit Somerset County Council meetings and agendas for information on Police and Crime Panel meetings.
For past agendas, papers and minutes vist the Bristol City Council Police and Crime Panel meetings page.
The Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Panel has 15 elected members and three independent co-opted members of the public.
The unitary authorities have two seats. Somerset County Council and Somerset District/Borough Councils each have one seat. An additional member for Bristol City Council was agreed in 2012 based on the city's population size.
For any questions about the Police and Crime Panel meetings contact:
Patricia Jones or Julian Gale
Somerset County Council
Tel: 07855 284 506 or 01823 357 628
The Police and Crime Commissioner
The Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) is responsible for holding the Chief Constable and Police force to account on the public's behalf.
The role of the PCC is to be the voice of the public. They are responsible for the totality of policing and the delivery of an effective and efficient Police service within their force area.
The PCC should:
- meet the public regularly to listen to their views on policing
- produce a police and crime plan setting out local policing priorities
- decide how the budget will be spent
- appoint Chief Constables and dismiss them if needed.
The Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner is Mark Shelford.
The Chief Constable is Sarah Crew and she is responsible for the implementation of the PCC's strategy and the day to day operational business of the Police force.
The Police and Crime Panel
The Panel scrutinises and keeps a regular check and balance on the performance and activities of the Commissioner.
The panel will:
- scrutinise the Commissioner's proposed council tax precept for policing, with the power to veto if the Panel considers necessary
- scrutinise the Commissioner's proposed appointment of a Chief Constable, with the power to veto if the Panel considers necessary
- review the Police and Crime Plan and Annual Report
- consider complaints against the PCC of a non-criminal nature
Complaints against the Police and Crime Commissioner
The Police and Crime Panel (the Panel) is responsible for handling non-criminal complaints against the Commissioner and criminal complaints and conduct matters that are referred back to the Panel by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).
The Panel's role in complaints handling is set out in the Elected Local Policing Bodies (Complaints and Misconduct) Regulations 2012 and accompanying Home Office Guidance.
Scope of the Panel's Activity
The complaints procedure covers issues relating to the conduct of the Commissioner. If you consider the Commissioner has not acted appropriately in relation to a matter for which the Commissioner is responsible, you may raise this issue under the Panel's complaints procedure.
Complaints against the Commissioner are dealt with fairly and appropriately and the Panel will refer any complaint relating to a criminal offence to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).
Submitting a complaint
The Panel has agreed to delegate responsibility for the initial handling and recording functions to the Commissioner's Chief Executive and Monitoring Officer. To make a complaint against the Commissioner, email or write to:-
The Chief Executive
Avon and Somerset Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner
Complaints regarding operational policing and other Police officers are not dealt with by the Panel. These matters are dealt with by the Constabulary's Professional Standards department
The Panel is the final arbiter of complaints against the Commissioner and complaints will be referred to the Panel for informal resolution if :
- the complainant is not satisfied with how the complaint has been dealt with
- the Chief Executive considers there to be an actual or perceived conflict of interest in dealing with the complaint
- the IPCC refers a matter back to the Panel
- there is a request for a review/escalation of a complaint by a member of the Panel
The aim is to acknowledge complaints within five working days. Matters requiring informal resolution will be considered as soon as practicable or at the next Panel meeting
There is no right of appeal against the outcome of informal resolution. A complaint about the way a matter was handled can be made to the Local Government Ombudsman.