Meet the Hertfordshire police and crime commissioner candidates

PUBLISHED: 13:49 28 October 2012

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Archant

THE battle to become Hertfordshire's first ever police and crime commissioner is heating up and in just over two weeks it will be down to the public to chose who will take on the new role.

Currently Hertfordshire Police is scrutinised by a Police Authority, which is made up of 17 people – nine councillors and eight independent members.

But this is all about to change.

From next month it is set to be abolished and one of four candidates will be elected to become the public face of the police force.

The four candidates for the post are:

* David Lloyd (Conservative)

* Sherma Batson (Labour)

* Christopher Townsend (Liberal Democrat)

* Marion Mason (UKIP).

The police and crime commissioner (PCC) will have the power to hire and fire the chief constable, set the force’s budget and council tax precept, and develop a police and crime plan.

The role, which comes with an annual salary of £75,000, also requires them to hold the chief constable to account, represent the views of the public and work with local partners to reduce crime.

Whoever is selected will be directly accountable to the electorate and have a fixed four-year term in office.

A Police and Crime Panel, made up of local councillors from across the county and independent members of the public, will also oversee the work of the commissioner.

They will be able to veto some of their decisions, such as appointing a chief constable.

On Thursday, November 15, polling stations will open and voters will be required to chose two candidates and rank them in order of preference.

The voting system, called the Supplementary Vote, states if a candidate has more than 50 per cent of the first preference votes they are elected.

But if no candidate reaches this threshold, the top two candidates go forward to a second round and all other candidates are eliminated.

Where a voter has selected a candidate who did not get through as their first choice, if their second choice was for one of the remaining hopefuls these votes are then reallocated.

The winner is the person with the highest combined total of first and second choice votes. It is as simple as that.

* Not sure who to vote for? Click on the links above right for profiles on each of the four candidates.

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