What next for Hernandez and her pal?

“The Police and Crime Panel for Devon and Cornwall has just recommended refusal to the proposal to appoint the Police and Crime Commissioner’s favoured candidate for the post of deputy. The rules surrounding appointment panels are relatively new and untested, so what happens now?

The good news for Ms Hernandez is that the panel did not choose to, or did not have the grounds, to veto the appointment of Mark Kingscote to the post of Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon & Cornwall, which it can do under certain circumstances. The guidance for panels is only to refuse rarely. There are now four working days for all parties to consider their next moves.

According to the Local Government Association’s guidance on confirmation hearings the PCC and her candidate then have three options:

She can continue with the appointment, but such a move would put her at loggerheads with the panel and possibly lead to public criticism when the recommendation to refuse was officially made public. In this case PCCs are advised to issue a statement focussing on why they thought the candidate did in fact meet the minimum standards for the post.

The candidate decides to withdraw. If this happens the formal recommendation to refuse is published but no further information is given.

The PCC decides not to appoint. The recommendation to refuse is published alongside a statement by the PCC setting out a timetable and process to make a new appointment.