Express & Star comment: We need cash spent on bobbies
There are big question marks hanging over the priorities of Britain's police forces.
While crime continues to rise, many of them appear to be more focused on community initiatives that pander to the sensitivities of the liberal elite.
The excuse that gets banded around with increasing regularity is that our police forces are struggling to cope due to Government funding cuts.
With that in mind, more than a few eyebrows will be raised at today's news that West Midlands Police is spending an extra £10 million on office staff.
At the same time, there will be 78 fewer frontline officers at work over the next 12 months.
This highly questionable move has been signed off after the region's Police and Crime Commissioner, David Jamieson, increased council tax by £12-a-year.
It means that while the force's budget is going up over the next year, its spending on bobbies is falling.
It begs the question, do we really need to spend millions on more office staff in the fight against crime?
You would have thought that at a time when murders, robberies and violent crime are all going through the roof, the police may have considered putting a few more bobbies on the beat.
But when it comes to police funding, all common sense seems to have gone out of the window.
It is time to face facts. Whatever the police is doing at the moment, it is not working.
The public wants to see results, instead it sees a worsening crime wave and an apparent lack of solutions from the powers that be.
Many of our crime commissioners have become little more than political mouthpieces, committed only to railing against funding cuts.
This was not what the position was created for.
It is hardly surprising that a growing number of people believe it would be better to scrap the post altogether.
Around the country such a move would save tens of millions of pounds that could be used to employ more police officers.
Sadly, with the way things are at the moment, those holding the purse strings would probably spend all the cash on community outreach programmes instead.