Gloucestershire’s Police and Crime Panel has supported plans to increase council tax in order to fight against cyber crime.

Police and Crime Commissioner Martin Surl outlined his plans for the budget last month, which included a proposal to increase council tax by two per cent to pay for more specialist policing in Gloucestershire to help finance the fight against internet crooks and trolls.

The budget was approved by the county's Police and Crime Panel today, Thursday, in Stroud and with the increase an average band D householder will pay £207.73 – an extra £4.05 annually or eight pence per week.

“To enable the Constabulary to plan with more certainty, I have prepared a budget for the next three years and I hope this will be the last time I put up council tax before the next election,” said Mr Surl.

“I have spent a lot of time canvassing the views of the people of Gloucestershire and they made it clear that, among other things, they wanted the police to be more visible and to give more prominence to tackling internet crime and anti-social behaviour.”

Gloucestershire’s Chief Constable Suzette Davenport said the budget and two per cent increase was good for crime reduction, policing and community safety in the short and long term.

“I am pleased that the Police and Crime Panel has supported the Commissioner’s budget proposals which will put us in a much stronger position to deliver the Police and Crime Plan and support the future viability of the Constabulary,” she said.

Last year’s budget was £102.7 million and details of where the money went and some examples of how it was used can be found on the PCC’s website