Reading residents are being offered the opportunity to grill candidates who will be standing in the up and coming Thames Valley Police Area Police and Crime Commissioner elections.
The free 'hustings' event will take place on Wednesday October 24th, between 6.30pm and 9.30pm, at Reading Town Hall. Local residents, businesses and organisations are all being invited to attend the session and ask the candidates questions on the issues which affect them.
Residents of Reading will have the opportunity to vote for the Police and Crime Commissioner for the Thames Valley Police Area on 15th November 2012.
The Home Office states that Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) will ensure the policing needs of their communities are met as effectively as possible, bringing communities closer to the police, building confidence in the system and restoring trust.
The aim of the role will be to ensure the police focus on the crimes that matter to local residents, whether it's tackling anti-social behaviour, reducing burglaries, reducing domestic violence or cracking down on drug dealing. They will set the police and community safety budgets, decide where the money is best spent and the intention is that they hold the police to account for delivering the kind of policing local residents want to see.
Three of the potential candidates for the new role have already confirmed that they will be attending the October 24th hustings in Reading, which is being organised by Reading's Community Safety Partnership (CSP).
The event is open to all and there is no need to book a place. Residents or organisations who would like to find out more about this event should contact Anthony Brain on 0118 937 3179 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The official Notice of Election was published today (October 8) which confirms that on 15th November residents across Thames Valley will have the opportunity to vote for their first ever local Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC). Each of the 41 police force areas in England and Wales, outside of London, will directly-elect a Commissioner.
Nominations for the election are now open. The full list of candidates for the election will be published on 23rd October, although candidates have until noon on 24th October to withdraw if they wish.
For local residents, the deadline for people to ensure they are registered to vote at these elections is 31st October. Poll cards will be issued around 22nd October to confirm the date of the election, the hours of poll and where to find their polling stations.
Registered voters who find it difficult to get to a polling station on election day, who are away on holiday on 15th November, or those who simply wish to vote in the comfort of their own homes need to get their completed postal vote application form in by 5pm on 31 October. Their name must be on the Electoral Register before they can vote by post.
A booklet explaining about the PCC elections and the Supplementary Vote system will be sent by the Electoral Commission to every household from 22 October. Polling stations across Thames Valley will be open from 7am to 10pm on 15th November so that people will be able to express their preferences on the candidates on offer. The count of the votes for each candidate will take place on 16th November.