PLANS by the police and crime commissioner to absorb Craven's Community Safety Partnership into a county -wide super-panel have been roundly criticised.

Julia Mulligan wants all six CSPs in North Yorkshire to join together and for the existing Craven CSP to be replaced with a Local Delivery Team.

The one North Yorkshire panel would hav e to bid for funding from the commissioner's own funding pot - instead of each applying separately.

But Craven councillors are seeking a meeting of all district councils in a bid to seek support to fight the plans.

Councillors said last week they wanted to work with Mrs Mulligan, but believed Craven had little in common with Scarborough or Selby.

They also felt they were being forced into agreeing to the move - or risk future funding.

Cllr John Roberts, Select Committee chairman, said he did not believe bigger was necessarily better and asked why the current successful situation needed to be changed.

" I believe the Craven CSP is working very well indeed - it is a little piece of the jigsaw that makes Craven such a great place to live," he said.

Councillors were told they could decide against joining the group, but left outside, funding would be difficult.

Cllr David Ireton said funding - which used to come directly from the Home Office, but in April last year became the responsibility of CPCs - had been reduced to the extent it now only covered staff salaries, leaving it difficult to carry out proactive schemes.

"I think this has got to happen, but I would question why it has to be North Yorkshire wide. I don't know what we have in common with Scarborough."

He also believed it was the creation of another unnecessary tier.

"If we are creating another strategic level, I don't see how that is going to improve the level of cover for Craven."

He added that the idea of a single unitary authority for North Yorkshire had been abandoned because it was considered too unwieldy.

"I don't like to be threatened, bullied and almost blackmailed by being told if you don't do this, you will not get funding."

Vice chairman, Cllr David Staveley, had concerns about how the funding would be allocated.

"The CSP is not broken, it does not need meddling with or fixing," he said.

Councillors agreed to contact all affected district councils to set up a meeting.