POLICE officers have passed an almost unanimous vote of no confidence in Hampshire and Isle of Wight Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Michael Lane, after it was announced he would not be investing more funding in frontline policing.

Ninety-eight per cent of the 1,608 Hampshire and Isle of Wight officers who responded to the vote, put forward by Hampshire Police Federation chair John Apter, agreed they had no confidence in Mr Lane.

However, the result is not binding and will not force the PCC out of office.
Mr Lane said: "I take the views of all police officers extremely seriously and I will continue to work to build confidence and trust.

“I have done all I can, and continue to do all I can within budget, to ensure victims are supported, vulnerable people are protected and the chief constable is empowered to ensure policing is as effective and efficient as possible. 

"I continue to invest more than 98 per cent of my total budget in policing."

During a meeting in Winchester, where Mr Lane quizzed by the Hampshire Police and Crime Panel, he said a £12 precept increase had saved 150 policing posts this year.

However, it was also revealed 122 posts were lost before the budget was set.

The panel has previously criticised Mr Lane's plans to spend money on increasing his office budget, rather than frontline policing.

Panel member Cllr Ian Richards asked why no new officers were joining the force, while Surrey Police planned to recruit 200 more people.
Mr Lane said: “Some of my colleagues have decided to use a different risk profile while looking into their force's future. My firm view is that we should be erring on what safe. We do not know what next year’s budget will be."

In terms of spending, he said £9,000 had been spent on spit hoods, £1.6 million on mobile technology for response officers, £800,000 allocated for all officers to be equipped with a taser and £800,000 on increasing the number of armed officers.