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West Mercia Governance Board

Notes of Meeting

Wednesday 21 December 2022, 14:00-16:30


  • John Campion (JC) Co-Chair – Police and Crime Commissioner
  • Pippa Mills (PM) Co-Chair – Chief Constable
  • Alex Murray (AM) – Deputy Chief Constable
  • Marc Bayliss (MB) – Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner
  • Gareth Boulton (GB) – Chief Executive Officer
  • Richard Muirhead (RM) – Head of Commercial Services
  • Rachel Hartland-Lane (RHL) – Assistant Chief Officer
  • Rachel Jones (RJ) – ACC, Local Policing
  • Maria Willmott (MW) – Minutes


  • Richard Cooper (RC) – ACC C&V
  • Paul Benfield (PB) – Treasurer


Ref 01/21/12/2022


Apologies received from Richard Cooper and Paul Benfield. 

Ref 02/21/12/2022

Minutes and action updates for the meeting held on the 23rd November 2022 

RM raised a point of clarification regarding Money Matters from November minutes. 

It was agreed that “This was due to assumptions around staff start dates”, would be deleted from the draft minutes. 

It was also agreed that “more accurate detail”, would be replaced with “more up to date detail”. 

Updates were provided against the action tracker (document attached). 

Ref 03/21/12/2022

Proposals for Governance Arrangements for WMGB (Paper) – For Decision 

The paper was presented. 

DECISION: The PCC supported the proposals put forward in the paper. 

Ref 04/21/12/2022

Contingency and EV fund (Paper) – For Decision 

The paper was presented by RHL and discussed. 

The PCC raised queries around: 
– Whether the Force wished to utilise this resource in this way in the context of a challenging budget settlement for 2023/24 

– Whether telematics was starting to have the desired impact around fleet utilisation and optimisation 
– The specific ‘ask’, from the Force due to estimated numbers around costs 

Reassurance was provided by WMP to the points raised. Telematics data will start to play a greater role in this business area, and time off the road for vehicles is an operational consideration. 

The PCC was supportive of the request, but was clear that the evidential basis should be improved through the availability of telematics data. The Commissioner asked to see this inform a review / refresh of the fleet replacement policy. 

A timescale was agreed for this to return in the March WMGB. 

Action – RHL to provide reviewed fleet replacement policy at March WMGB 

DECISION: The PCC supported WMP’s request for the release of £500k, and £22k, as per the paper. 

Ref 05/21/12/2022

Performance Framework (2 x Papers) – For Information  

The paper was presented by AM and discussed. 

The PCC was supportive of the Force seeking to drive performance in the ways set out by the DCC. 

A concern was raised around the PCC’s requirement for information necessary to carry out his role. AM provided reassurance that a draft paper will set out clear proposals and can be amended if it is not fit for PCC / Police and Crime Panel requirements. 

A review meeting was suggested following the first quarterly report. 

AM provided reassurance that the OPCC will receive draft docs as things develop rather than a finalised product. 

Ref 06/21/12/2022

Improving Customer Services

MB declared a personal interest in the subject matter prior to the agenda item as a licenced firearms holder. 

The paper was presented by RJ and discussed. 

The PCC was not clear on the recommendations presented by WMP. RJ clarified that there was a preference to recruit staff, but the time taken to recruit would mean the use of overtime was necessary. PM added that a technological solution is also preferable, given the opportunity it provides for savings and efficiency. 

MB raised queries as to whether the proposals would actually deal with the current backlog, which continues to grow, and whether two members of staff was sufficient. 

RJ stated that a combination of both technology and staff resource was required. Two staff would make a discernible difference, there would then be a levelling out period. A blended approach was the best option to improving services.

The PCC: 
– Was supportive in principle of a blended approach, but the detail would need working up via a decision notice.  
– Felt recent questions from the Minister were very simple 
– Noted that the FLU is held in high regard around the service it delivers. It just takes a significant amount of time to deliver services. 

ACTION – RJ and GB to engage around DN. 

ACTION – RJ to review Minister response and reissue simplified answer. 

Ref 07/21/12/2022

Ethnicity Pay Gap (2 x Papers) – For Information 

The paper was presented by RHL and discussed. 

The progress highlighted and transparency around data was welcomed by the PCC. 

Ref 08/21/12/2022

C&T Update (2 x Papers) – For information 

The paper was presented by AM and discussed. 

RM presented additional context around challenges within the DST portfolio. 

Ref 09/21/12/2022

Money Matters (Paper) – For Information 

The paper was presented by RM and discussed. 

The PCC reiterated the importance of reassurance in the context of the budgetary framework, given both ongoing budget builds and the significant gap in spending year to date vs projected outturn. 

RM provided reassurance that reasonable data around profiled expenditure is emerging, but WMP is not yet fully confident in the position. Finance teams are flagging discrepancies. WMP now expecting to be on budget or slightly under in 2022/23. 

RM stated that WMP is now increasingly confident around the profile of the budget, but think they need better monitoring. Projections are not as accurate as they need to be. 

Ref 10/21/12/2022

ACC/ACO Update – for information and discussion – (3 x Papers) – for Information 

The papers were presented and discussed. 

In respect of the Business Services update, the PCC sought reassurance that the Force was no longer dependent on single brands within the fleet, following previous issues. 

Reassurance was provided by RHL that was the case. 

RM clarified that two companies had now pulled out of the police market however, leaving one remaining “single supplier” on the current framework. However, the Force is now taking steps to mitigate this, including making use of the second-hand market. 

Ref 11/21/12/2022


None raised

Ref 12/21/12/2022

Date, time, location:  

Wednesday 25th January 2023, 14:00hrs, Willison Room, Hindlip 

Ref 13/21/12/2022

Deep Dive –  

Money Matters Q3 

Op Lincoln quarterly update