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Bournemouth council wants officers to have police powers
BOURNEMOUTH Council is applying for officers to have the power to issue fines for anti-social behaviour in Boscombe.
Four members of council staff would be able to crack down on illegal cycling, street drinking and more, to help the ‘under resourced’ police.
The council would need to get approval from Dorset Police first, and officers would then need to be trained before they could issue the penalty notices.
The scheme is revealed in the new report from the Boscombe Regeneration Partnership.
Boscombe West Cllr Jane Kelly, also a cabinet member for regeneration, said the powers would go to four existing staff.
She said: “It’s a wonderful idea. The police are so stretched they can’t do it all.
“From my conversations, the officers they are really keen, they want the place to look better, they want to stop anti-social behaviour.”
The Echo has regularly reported residents’ frustration with street drinkers and cyclists using Boscombe precinct, and both problems are singled out in the report.
Penalty notices vary. Dorset Police currently issue £30 fines for cycling on pavements.
Boscombe Police have agreed to the scheme but the approval would need to come from Chief Constable Martin Baker. The powers would be available under the Police Reform Act.
Cllr David Smith, cabinet member for communities, said: “This scheme is still in its infancy.
“I am personally keen to get as many powers as possible that the Chief Constable is allowed to give.”
Colchester has been one of the leading councils in giving officers enforcement powers.
Cllr Tim Young, its cabinet member for community safety, said: “It’s worked very well indeed.
“They issue a number of fixed penalty notices and it just allows the police to get on with the more serious matters.”