Rotorua's mayor is keen to join forces with other councils around the country to lobby for better police resourcing.

Steve Chadwick told the Rotorua Daily Post the issue was discussed at a recent meeting of rural and provincial mayors and a number of those present expressed concern about police resourcing pressures.

Several councils were joining forces on a remit asking Local Government New Zealand to advocate for more resources for community policing, which would be presented at its annual general meeting in July.

It asks the Government to increase police resourcing to ensure adequate staffing and coverage for communities, so police chiefs are not forced to compromise community policing because of budget constraints.

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Mrs Chadwick said she expected councillors to discuss whether the Rotorua Lakes Council would support the remit in the next week or so, but she was personally in favour of it.

She had recently discussed the issue with Rotorua police area commander Inspector Bruce Horne and also raised it with local MPs Todd McClay and Fletcher Tabuteau.

"The safety of children, families and communities is vitally important for all of us and we want to be assured that police resourcing is adequate and allocated appropriately. As community leaders, councils should put their collective weight behind any push for improvement relating to important issues."

She said her concerns were around the issue, particularly during school holidays, of young people in the CBD.

"It is very important to us as a community here to make sure we have the right level [of staffing] and they are given the right support."

Mrs Chadwick said she believed if mayors got together they could be effective.

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ROTORUA DAILY POST
5 Jul, 2016 8:40am
2 minutes to read

Mr Horne said police had introduced a number of initiatives to focus on its key priorities - to reduce victimisations from crime, and injuries and deaths from serious crashes.

Mr Horne said reported crime in Rotorua had dropped 25 per cent in the past 10 years and the Ministry of Justice's crime and safety survey showed the majority of the public felt the level of crime had reduced and felt safer in their communities.

"Those results have been achieved without an increase in police staffing."

He said the strategies had led to a number of improvements in police deployment and equipment and all frontline police now had mobile phones which let them more efficiently access information in the field.

"The use of new technologies has helped improve both the effectiveness and efficiency of frontline police staff."

He said police also worked in partnership with local communities and local government on initiatives such as City Guardians, community patrols, CCTV, and hosting volunteers and other community partners in police stations.

Mr Horne said the model of policing in New Zealand was focused on community engagement and partnership.

"Our police staff, and their families, live and work in this community and they are absolutely committed to ensuring New Zealand remains as safe as it can be for all who live and visit here."