Plaid Cymru greets Police building closure news with caution

Plaid Cymru Assembly Member and Member of Parliament for the Carmarthen East & Dinefwr constituency, Rhodri Glyn Thomas and Jonathan Edwards greeted the news that 13 police buildings will close in the Dyfed-Powys Police constabulary with caution as the force invests in police personnel rather than the police buildings.

Police buildings in Llandeilo and Pencader, both in the Carmarthen East & Dinefwr constituency, will close as part of the force’s plans to save £13million by 2014.

The Plaid Cymru elected members said they were encouraged by the force’s plans to concentrate on the closing of buildings rather than cutting jobs, but were concerned that the level of police presence in the towns and villages will not match current levels.

Jonathan Edwards MP said:

 

“When the level of cuts in the Conservative government’s spending review was revealed, we all knew that Dyfed-Powys police force faced a significant challenge to reduce spending.  Both the Chancellor and Prime Minister said there would be no affect on front line services.   The announcement by our police force has shown the UK Government’s position to be completely flawed.

“It is encouraging, however, that the force has taken on additional police officers and special constables, and has taken a sensible approach to rooting out waste before cutting jobs.

“I have written to both the Chief Constable and Chief Executive of Carmarthenshire County Council to encourage the collaboration of services that could assist both the local authority and the force.  Would our Libraries need to close 3 days a week if the police force was renting an office within the building?  Cooperation between authorities has the potential to assist everybody as the task of balancing the books gets tougher.

“The safety our towns and villages is paramount.  I look to the police, in light of severe cuts, to maintain their presence within our communities.”

 

Assembly Member Rhodri Glyn Thomas added:

“We cannot blame the police force for the cuts that have been imposed on them by the Tories and Lib Dems in London.

 

“But closure of police buildings isn’t easily justified by saying they are not used by the public.  These police buildings serve as a base for officers who often cover large geographical areas.  The police must be confident they can continue to respond to instances promptly from alternative locations.

 

“I am undoubtedly pleased to see that following the Tories wielding their axe to the police budget, our force is minimising cuts to police officers and personnel, and hope it will continue ensure front line jobs are prioritised.”

 

 

ENDS

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