30 Nov 2011

Labour fires gun on police commissioner selections

Labour’s National Executive Committee has given the go-ahead for local parties to start picking candidates for the new posts of police commissioners.  Elections are due to take place in November next year in 41 different areas of England and Wales (except London) corresponding with local police forces.

Today the former minister Paddy Tipping announced he is going for Labour’s nomination in Nottinghamshire, where he served as MP for Sherwood from 1997 until last year.  Tipping stood down as an MP in 2010 because his wife was terminally ill.  As well as a couple of brief spells as a minister (in the Cabinet office, and deputy leader of the house), he also twice served as PPS to Jack Straw, first at the Home Office and later in the Ministry of Justice.  Another seeking the Notts nomination is Penny Griggs, a former Lord Mayor of Nottingham.

Two county councillors are thought to be interested in being Conservative candidate in Nottinghamshire – Mike Quigley (former leader of Bassetlaw Council) and Bruce Laughton, Parliamentary candidate for Gedling in 2010.

The former Police Minister, Welsh First Minister (and Welsh Secretary) Alun Michael has just told me that’s he’s thinking about running for the job.  If elected – in South Wales presumably – that would necessitate a by-election in his seat of Cardiff South and Penarth.  Commissioners are not allowed to serve as MPs at the same time.

I hear that the former Labour MEP Simon Murphy may also run for the job in the West Mercia, though I’ve not had confirmation of this.

In the biggest police authority outside London – West Midlands – Mike Olley, a former Birmingham councillor (1991-2005) who manages the Broad Street Business Improvement District, is putting himself forward for the Labour nomination.

Another Labour contender is James Plaskitt, the former MP for Warwick and Leamington, who was a junior minister at the DWP, and lost his seat at the 2010 election.

Wolverhampton councillor Bob Jones, a member of the West Midlands Police Authority, is a contender for the PPC job in his area.

5 reader comments

  1. Mike Cross says:

    AS WE EXPECTED THE JOBS WILL GO TO SOME USELESS POLITICIAN FROM THE POOL OF FAILURES LEFT OVER FROM THE LAST LABOUR GOVERNMENT. NOBODY FROM THE REAL WORLD OF BUSINESS OR EVEN EDUCATION SEEMS TO BE INTERESTED. It will end up with the same failed mix as the EXISTING Police Authorities with another level, the commissioner

    1. noel Williams says:

      If a decent Cheif Constable was appointed then we would not need a commissioner or Police Authority.
      I suspect another job for one of the boys will be done and dusted long before any “vote”.
      No doubt he ,she or whatever will have to be politically correct and anti middle class hard working Britain !!

      Noel Williams
      2nd December 11

  2. Monty Slocombe says:

    How different will a Commissioner be to existing Police Authorities I wonder ? All applicants appear to be polititians. By the time they are all staffed up, together with hangers on etc., etc., what will we have ?

    How different it would be if we could have an ELECTED Chief Officer of Police who the public could sack if he/she didn’t deliver the goods.

    We have a Police SERVICE for which we pay. We should be able to “shop around” as we do for other goods and services, and that service should be just as answerable to the Sales of Goods Acts as are other services.

  3. Jon Harvey says:

    I would say watch this space – you may begin to find some ‘new’ people coming forward for selection as candidates – people who have not spent a lifetime as a politician (although that does not mean they would not be a good candidate) – but perhaps people who have worked in business for decades and kept a close interest in all matters relating to politics and justice throughout…

  4. Stu says:

    I am a 40-year old pilot in the RAF at the end of 18 years flying in various parts of the world. I’ve kept abreast of policing developments over the last 20 years and have authored articles on international policing. However, I am not part of a political party. I am very interested in this post in order to make policing more accountable but also to support the police to target the root causes of crime in society. Am I the type of person that people would like to see apply to be a commissioner?

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