Tenterden Town Council’s external committee on Monday, 10 February voted against hiring a private security firm to patrol the town at night.
Councillors were advised that while private security would certainly deter further thefts, the cost of hiring a firm would be significant.
To hire a full-time, two-officer patrol from 10pm-6am would cost £92,504, which would add over 15 percent to residents’ Tenterden Town Council tax bills, while a mobile patrol calling in at random times during the night would cost £71,616, requiring a tax increase of almost 12 percent.
The Mayor, Cllr Jean Curteis, said that not everyone was reporting incidents of crime and vandalism to the police, while Cllr Ken Mulholland said that Kent police commissioner Matthew Scott had promised to put extra police on the street.
Given the potential impact on budgets, the external committee voted against hiring private security, but agreed to work closer with the Ashford Partnership Against Crime initiative, which could link to the local Neighbourhood Watch scheme.