Home Secretary Priti Patel announced a one-year funding settlement for policing on December 17th including £414m to help recruit an additional 6000 officers nationally and £288m that would depend on all Police and Crime Commissioners increasing the Police Precept in Council tax for local residents by £15 for a Band D property. This means an additional £18.7m for Devon and Cornwall if the Commissioner raises the Precept to the full extent.
Nick Thomas Symonds MP – Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary said:
‘The Prime Minister’s promise on police recruiting is unravelling. The Tories are putting the cost of extra officers onto local Council Tax payers and demanding £120m of “efficiency savings” which will mean further cuts to already overstretched police forces. This settlement also expects the police force to recruit the same number of officers last year but for less money. You simply can’t trust the Conservatives to keep people safe.’
Gareth Derrick – Labour’s candidate for Police and Crime Commissioner in Devon and Cornwall, comments:
“Funding for more police officers is very welcome, but the Home Secretary’s announcement doesn’t go far enough as yet again it relies heavily on local taxpayers to make up for what should be put right by government. The impact of cuts imposed by the Conservative’s since 2010 can’t be underestimated. These cuts brought about a tremendous strain on police resources across Devon and Cornwall which continue to bite hard into the ability to keep our communities safe.
If our Police and Crime Commissioner implements this plan it will need a seriously inflation-busting rise in the police precept by nearly 7% next year, adding up to a rise of over 30% in the past 4 years. What are we getting for these huge increases?
There have been big challenges for policing with the pandemic, and our communities are struggling with an unprecedented economic downturn and worse to come with the Brexit uncertainties. This is simply unfair and it will hit Devon and Cornwall harder than most. Sadly, we’ll be shouldering the responsibility for getting policing back on track that should be met by central government.
It is sad too that the settlement does little to boost other roles such as PCSOs, the civilian Control Room staff and forensics teams. All of these are vital to ensure the best results from policing and need proper funding too.”
- Details of the Home Office Provisional Police Funding Settlement can be found here.