DORSET’S new chief constable will receive a salary of £146,000 a year, as residents are asked to pay more towards services.

At a meeting of the Police and Crime Panel, acting chief constable Debbie Simpson was appointed to the role permanently.

Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner Martyn Underhill defended the increase in her salary.

The position was advertised as paying £146,370 a year, plus removal/relocation expenses and a lease car.

The previous chief constable Martin Baker’s salary was £142,533, topped up with a bonus of £13,169 and car allowance of £4,309.

Some panel members raised concern about the salary hike, including David Smith, who said he couldn’t understand why the decision had been made when the rest of the force had had a pay freeze.

Mr Underhill said the decision was a ‘one off’ to attract the best possible candidates that shared his vision for Dorset.

Members supported an increase in the precept which will see a Band D property in Dorset pay 7p a week extra – an average increase of £3.51 per year.

Mr Underhill said it would be a ‘penny a day to keep crime away’.