• Conservative candidate takes up police commissioner role

    19th November 2012 | News | Claire
  • But the turnout was spectacularly low – at just over 15 per cent.

    Mr Hogg replaces a police board – made up of councillors and independent members.

    He gained 35.24 per cent of the vote, beating off competition from his nearest rival, Brian Greenslade, standing as an independent, despite being a liberal democrat councillor serving on Devon County Council.

    According to today’s Western Morning News (link here – http://www.thisisdevon.co.uk/Cut-crime-agenda-new-Devon-Cornwall-police/story-17355547-detail/story.html), Mr Hogg says his top priority will be to cut crime, which seems to me like a bit of a motherhood and apple pie statement.

    Isn’t it violent crime that is largely on the increase?  At least he could have narrowed his statement down a bit!

    Reading the BBC coverage, the low turnout is being blamed on ‘voter apathy’ and Mr Cameron claims turnout was always going to be low and blames the media!

    Nothing to do with his government then?

    This view also ignores the fact that many people will not have voted as a protest against a set of massively expensive and unnecessary elections.  The cost for the elections alone, is estimated at around £75m – at a time when police budgets are being dramatically slashed.

    And what will a conservative commissioner mean for residents in Devon and Cornwall mean?

    One thing that seems unlikely, is an independent free-spirited police chief, who wants to challenge the government on its future plans for the police service.

    Time will tell how irresistible the party line turns out to be.