Council chiefs in part of Lancashire have become the first to register a ‘vote of no confidence’ in a decision by Police and Crime Commissioner to appoint former police authority members to senior positions.
A group of four Conservative councillors on Wyre Council tabled a notice of motion at a full council meeting last week, calling on Clive Grunshaw to reverse his decision to appoint a deputy commissioner and four assistant commissioners at a cost of £100,000 and instead plough the cash into frontline policing.
The notice said that the members “deplored” the decision and accused Mr Grunshaw of “cronyism”.
And it was carried by a majority of councillors at the meeting.
Coun Don MacNaughton, who tabled the notice, said: “That is the position of Wyre Borough Council now, it has been voted by the majority of councillors.
“We can’t enforce that on Clive Grunshaw but we are allowed to register our displeasure. A notice of motion is the most formal way of going about these things.”
Asked whether the decision represented a vote of no confidence in Mr Grunshaw’s decision to make the appointments, he added: “You can say that. The notice of motion condemned the decision by Clive Grunshaw to take £100,000 out of the police budget and spend it on his cronies.”
Ron Greenhough, Julie Newsham and Patsy Ormrod also signed the motion, which said all the positions went to old colleagues on the police authority and none of them were advertised.
Conservative members of the council voted for the motion and Labour members voted against it.
A spokesman for the commissioner has consistently pointed out that Mr Grunshaw has followed correct procedure under the law and is completely entitled to make the appointments.
A spokesman for the office of the commissioner said: “We can confirm that the correct procedure has been followed in relation to the recent appointment of the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner, in accordance with the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act.”