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Police and Justice Act 2006

Section 19: Local authority scrutiny of crime and disorder matters

188.This section extends the remit of local authorities to scrutinise the functioning of the local Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership (CDRP)/Community Safety Partnership (CSP).

189.Subsection (1) requires every local authority to have a crime and disorder committee with the power to review and scrutinise, and make reports or recommendations, regarding the functioning of the responsible authorities of the local CDRP/CSP, as defined under section 5 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998.

190.Subsection (2) requires the committee to provide a copy of any report or recommendations they make by virtue of subsection (1)(b) to all the responsible authorities and co-operating bodies of the CDRP/CSP.

191.Subsection (3) puts ward councillors under a duty to respond to a “community call for action” from anybody living or working in the area which they represent, on a matter concerning crime and disorder (including anti-social behaviour and behaviour adversely affecting the environment) or substance abuse in that area. The ward councillor’s response must indicate what (if any) action he or she proposes to take to resolve the matter. The ward councillor may refer any such matter to the local authority’s crime and disorder committee for consideration. The ward councillor might be expected to do this when reasonable steps to resolve the problem through more informal means have been taken but have failed.

192.The obligation imposed by this section does not apply to a councillor who is a member of a county council for an area in which there are district councils. Nor do the obligations imposed by subsections (4) to (6) apply in relation to a county council for an area in which there are district councils.

193.Subsection (4) provides for the person raising the matter to refer it to the local authority executive for consideration, if the ward councillor does not take the matter forward.

194.Subsection (5) requires the council executive to consider any matter referred to them and to respond indicating what (if any) action they propose to take, and enables them to refer the matter to the crime and disorder committee.

195.Subsection (6) requires the committee to consider a crime and disorder matter referred to it by a ward councillor or the council executive, and enables the committee to make a report or recommendations on it to the local authority.

196.Subsection (7) requires the committee to send a copy of any report or recommendations made under subsection (6) to such of the responsible authorities and co-operating bodies of the CDRP/CSP as it considers appropriate.

197.Subsection (8) puts the responsible authorities and co-operating bodies which receive a copy of the report or recommendations under a duty to consider the report or recommendations and respond to the committee indicating what (if any) action they will take. It requires them to have regard to the report or recommendations.

198.Subsection (9) provides for the crime and disorder committee to be an overview and scrutiny committee for councils operating executive arrangements.

199.Subsection (10) gives effect to Schedule 8, which contains further provision about the crime and disorder committees of local authorities not operating executive arrangements, and in particular the City of London.

200.Subsection (11) contains further definitions of the terms used in the section.

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