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A wasteful position

I see that Angus Macpherson, Police Crime Commissioner, is asking us the council tax payer to give him an extra £1 per month to help towards policing costs across the county.

He continually bleats on about the lack of funding given to Wiltshire by the Government, when compared to other forces.

In all honesty, I’m sick to death of it. Here we have a man who is paid a salary in excess of £71,000pa. And when you look at his monthly expenses, he claims for absolutely everything! By that I mean return car journeys for as little as three miles in total.

Have a look yourself, its an eye opener. You can view them online

I once spoke to Mr Macpherson personally when he was hosting an outside event at Devizes Market.

I asked him the same questions especially about his expenses. His reply to me was “I’m doing nothing wrong or outside guidelines”

I’m not saying he is. But, it is a bit rich to ask for money from us in one hand and then claim for everything in the other.

More importantly, I haven’t seen the extra police officers he promised us, out walking the streets of our town.

Can I recommend that no further increase is imposed upon us, the council tax payer.

I don’t think the position of a PCC is needed or warranted when you consider how much it costs in total to the public purse.

This elite position should, in my opinion, be scrapped once and for all.

Alan Wilson, Shapwick Close, Nythe

Future generations’ loss

You report (SA, January15) about the upgrading of the Swindon to Marlborough Railway Path is both welcome and interesting as you report that this valuable investment was EU-funded.

I hope sincerely that the source of funding will be acknowledged by signs with the EU flag.

Of course, as from 31 January, we shall be cut off from this and many other valuable programmes once the Tory Brexit is completed.

It will also cut us off from other important programmes such as the Erasmus Programme (European Region Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students), which the Government voted against, including continuing full membership in the withdrawal negotiations.

Currently, 53 per cent of UK university students who study abroad do so through the scheme.

Not only that, but Brexit will cut us off from other significant exchange schemes such as the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions for young researcher training and the prestigious European Research Council grants and full participation in the EU Framework Programme (Horizon Europe) to the detriment of the UK’s research base.

Given the strength of Britain’s research, Brexit will only serve to weaken this base and make the UK a far less attractive country with which to collaborate.

Thus Brexit is depriving our coming generations of these valuable opportunities to extend their knowledge and experience.

Tony Mayer, Wheatlands, Haydon Wick

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