Peter Jones, Leader of East Sussex County Council, has announced that he is putting his name forward for selection as the Conservative candidate for the newly established role of Police and Crime Commissioner for Sussex.
Peter, who will stand down from the County Council in 2013, believes that, working with the operational police, he can deliver a more effective police service for the whole of Sussex with reduced costs.
‘We took over from the Lib-Lab pact a nearly broke County Council in 2001 and in ten years we have transformed it into one of the best in the country. Our services are much better.
“At the same time we have taken costs out to the tune of £100m per annum over those ten years.
“Council tax increases have been minimised and we are not planning any further increases,’ he says.
Peter became a County Councillor in 1997 and Leader in 2001. He retired from the City in 1994 and has applied a deep knowledge of business to achieve fundamental change in the County Council.
Recently he led the creation of the South East 7, a group of upper tier local authorities who are dedicated to working in partnership to deliver new and better services to their residents while making savings of some £500m per annum over the next three years.
‘I chaired the Sussex Police Authority from 2005 to 2007 and remain a member. I took on the Labour government over the attempted forced amalgamation of police forces and won. I know how we can deliver better policing and relieve the pressure on hard pressed council tax payers.
‘We can do the same with policing as have with the South East 7, freeing up money so we can respond more effectively to the public’s concerns.
“As Police Commissioner my most important job will be to listen to all the people of Sussex. Then I will translate those concerns into action by the police to make their communities even safer,’ Peter says.
‘Sussex Police is already very good and I want to free up resources to help them do even better.’
Peter is married and lives near Hastings where he has been a key player in the ongoing regeneration of the town.