Select Committee on Home Affairs Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence


Memorandum submitted by the Mayor of London


  1.1.  The Greater London Authority is the strategic body for London and is constituted through the Greater London Authority Act 1999. The Authority has a democratically elected executive Mayor, Ken Livingstone and an Assembly comprising 25 members that are responsible for scrutinising the policies and decisions of the Mayor.

  1.2  The GLA sets a budget for itself and each of the four functional bodies. These budgets together form the consolidated budget. It is the Mayor who sets the budgets, unless the Assembly can achieve a two-thirds majority in favour of alternative budget proposals. The Metropolitan Police Authority (MPA) is one of the four functional bodies of the GLA.

  1.3  The MPA is an independent body. The Mayor appoints 12 members of the Assembly to the MPA and sets the budget of the MPA (subject to the Home Secretary's reserve powers to set a minimum budget for the MPA). In relation to the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS), the Mayor can give comments to the Home Secretary on his/her recommended officer, prior to the appointment of the Commissioner.

  1.4  The Mayor's budget priorities reflect his strong commitment to policing and delivering on his manifesto commitment to make London a Safer City. Crime and community safety are top priorities for Londoners. These are reflected within the policy priorities for Mayor Livingstone. In a recent MORI poll for the Mayor, 52 per cent of Londoners rated safety and crime as priority issues for the Capital.

  1.5  The Mayor and the Mayor's Office work closely with other agencies in London to ensure that efforts around crime reduction are co-ordinated and that there is a joined-up approach to crime prevention across all agencies. A current example of such work is the efficiency and effectiveness review programme in the MPS, which is led by a tri-partite MPA/MPS/GLA project board. This programme of reviews will contribute to more effective use of budgets and resources in the MPS and all savings will be invested back into frontline services. Another example of this type of project is the joint transport policing initiative between Transport for London, MPA/MPS/GLA, which is focused on reducing crime and the fear of crime, the efficient movement of buses and the enforcement of taxi licensing arrangements in twenty key bus corridors in London.


2.1  Consultation Period

  2.1.1  The Mayor is concerned that a period of only four days elapsed between the end of the consultation period for the White Paper "Policing a new Century—a blueprint for reform" and the 1st Reading of the Police Reform Bill in the House of Lords. It is unlikely that this allowed for an adequate period of time for Government to properly reflect on the submissions to the White Paper. Given the importance of this legislation the consultation period needed to be substantially longer. Notwithstanding this the Mayor welcomes the Government's proposals for reform of the police service and believes that the proposals contained in the Bill will contribute to ensuring a more focused and responsive police service in London.

  2.2.2  However, there are issues, which are either not adequately addressed, or not addressed at all in the Police Reform Bill. It is the Mayor's view that the issues surrounding democratic arrangements in London and the fragmented policing structure in London continue to be an area of concern. The GLA Act 1999 recognised the need for a democratically elected Mayor and yet failed to confer adequate powers to address areas of concern such as crime. Whilst the Police Reform Bill may not now be the appropriate Parliamentary vehicle to address the fundamentals of this issue, the Mayor would like the committee to note this point when considering the amendments he is proposing for the Police Reform Bill.

  2.2.3  The Mayor is seeking to secure amendments to the Police Reform Bill to ensure that the role of the Mayor in London's policing is properly reflected in legislation. The Police Reform Bill needs to reflect the unique arrangements in London recognising the role of all democratic bodies on the important issue of policing.

  2.2.4  Through the entirety of the Police Reform Bill there is no recognition or acknowledgement of the unique role of the Mayor in London's policing. The Mayor would welcome, on the face of the Bill, provision, wherever there is a need to consult with police authorities, that this consultation is extended to the Mayor of London. For example the Mayor is not regarded as a consultee on the National Policing Plan, despite the fact that he sets the budget for the MPA. The Mayor believes that this is an oversight that can be easily addressed by amendment of the Bill.

2.3  Directions to Chief Officers

  2.3.1  Overall, the Mayor welcomes Clause 5 which empowers the Secretary of State to require a chief officer to take remedial measures to improve efficiency and effectiveness where there is concern over a police force's performance. However, in order to reassure the public, the Mayor believes that reference should be made that this power of intervention will be exercised with caution and used as a last resort. The Mayor also seeks an assurance that the Home Secretary's directions acknowledge that different Basic Command Units and forces are characterised by different socio-economic conditions and communities.

2.4  Independent Police Complaints Commission

  2.4.1  The Mayor welcomes the establishment of this new complaints body, as the handling of complaints is crucial to Londoner's confidence in the police system. It is the Mayor's view that the proposals contained within the Bill do not satisfactorily tackle the issue of disclosure. This issue of disclosure was raised by William MacPherson in his final report on the Stephen Lawrence enquiry and it is the Mayor's view that the proposed categories for exemption will hinder openness within the system. As well as this, direction and control of a force should become a category of complaint.

  2.4.2  The Mayor believes that serious misconduct that may involve a member of the public, or be in the public interest to investigate, may not be the subject matter of complaint for a variety of reasons. He therefore considers it important that the IPCC be given a specific stated power to call in non-complaint matters.

  2.4.3  Schedule 2 para (6) (2) provides that the IPCC should be able to second police officers to its staff. In his submission on the proposals contained in the White Paper, the Mayor recommended that IPCC investigators should also be drawn from civilian/lay officials with investigatory experience eg from Customs & Excise, the Inland Revenue and local authority ombudsman staff. The Mayor argued that this was necessary to safeguard the independence of the IPCC. Neither of these proposals has been included in the Bill and is, therefore, a matter of concern.

  2.4.4  The Mayor is concerned that Clause 20 (6) allows for the Secretary of State to provide for exceptions to the duty to keep a complainant informed about his/her case. The Mayor wishes this Clause to be removed in its entirety, as he considers that it will hinder openness, transparency and confidence in the procedures. The Mayor is anxious that a police officer that is the subject matter of a report will be able to claim that disclosure will adversely affect him/her, if the report contains criticisms of his/her actions.

2.5  Conduct of Persons in other forms of police service

  2.5.1  The Mayor seeks clarification as to whether Clause 21 and 24 allows for the IPCC to issue guidance on the handling of complaints, conduct matters or any other related matters to Community Support Officers and Accredited Community Safety Organisations.

2.6  Accreditation under community safety accreditation schemes

  2.6.1  The Mayor is concerned that Accredited Persons under Clause 35 and Schedule 5 of the Police Reform Bill could have conferred on them the power to detain and require the name and address of a person acting in an anti-social manner. The Mayor opposes this power on two counts. First, these powers carry significant responsibilities, requiring expert training, management and accountability systems, which are the remit of a highly professional police force. Second, the majority of these powers will be exercised in relation to incidents occurring on the street, where there is the potential for volatile situations to occur, putting the accredited person in a highly vulnerable situation. The Mayor is minded that for the dual-key arrangements for invoking powers to protect the public against abuse of authority to be effective it should be limited to issuing fixed penalty notices and not detention. In relation to London the dual key process should involve the Mayor as a consultee.

2.7  Police Authorities to produce three year strategy plans

  2.7.1  The Mayor welcomes Clause 66. However, he is concerned that it is not enough that strategy plans must be consistent with the National Plans covering the same period. He recommends that this strategy should also reflect those of local Crime & Disorder Reduction Strategies, Youth Justice Plans and Drug Action Strategies. This would enable policy makers and corporate planners to integrate plans into cohesive frameworks. Furthermore, a three-year planning cycle which coincides with all these strategic plans would improve strategic co-ordination of planning processes and ensure that all plans, national and local, support each other and do not require energy to be invested on planning to the detriment of service delivery. The Mayor would like to see this reflected in the Bill.

2.8  Crime & Disorder Reduction Partnership

  2.8.1  The Mayor is supportive of the Government's proposal to maintain the profile of treatment-related aspects of the Drugs Strategy and the significant contribution of health to the wider crime and disorder reduction agenda. However, the Mayor recommends that it should not be the sole remit of the Primary Care Trust to be the responsible authority for the development and delivery of the wider crime and drug-related harm reduction. Accordingly he proposes that local educational and social services authorities, probation and prisons falling into a local area should also be made responsible authorities


  3.1  Attached as an annex is a list of the amendments that the Mayor is seeking to achieve.

The Mayor of London

February 2002

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