When one observes that of the extra 1250 police recruited since the election, only 210 were posted to general duties but 133 to traffic duties, we believe the time has come to drastically overhaul our Police Force.
WB would suggest that the police need to be responsive to what local citizens demand in terms of policing policy. Therefore the present police structure should be abandoned completely and replaced with;
1/ A National Police Force similar to the Australian Federal Police or the Federal Bureau of Investigation, responsible for issues such as; Organised Crime, White Collar Crime, Security and Diplomatic Protection. The top officer being appointed by the State Services Commissioner following consultation between the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition
2/ A National Highway Patrol with jurisdiction limited to State Highways and Motorways, The top officer being appointed by the State Services Commissioner following consultation between the Minister of Transport and the Opposition Spokesperson for Transport.
3/ Regional Police Forces based on regional boundaries with the top officer in each region being elected for a fixed term by that region's voters.
WB firmly believes that local police chiefs should be directly accountable to the communities they serve, rather than to a politically appointed Commissioner based in Wellington.
With the local police chief under no illusions as to community expectations and with the ability to direct resources locally, we would I believe see a drastic drop in the crime rate.