Derbyshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Charles has said that the proposed police grant, announced earlier this week, amounts to further draconian cuts to the police budget.
The Home Office revealed that overall police funding in England and Wales will be cut by 5.1% in 2015-16 which equates to a loss of approximately £5.4m in Derbyshire, when inflation is included in the arithmetic.
The amount of money ‘top sliced’ from the overall policing budget has risen from £165m in 2014-15 to £251m in 2015-16 - equating to a 52% increase. Some of this money will be returned to forces via the Innovation Fund, PFI and Special Grant but they may well have to compete for their share. There has been an increase of 67% in the top slice going to the IPCC (Independent Police Complaints Commission).
Alan Charles said: “It’s very clear that the police service is facing further draconian cuts to its budget and we learned this week that they intend to allocate Derbyshire around £400,000 less that they had originally intimated.
“This will inevitably make balancing the books even more difficult. Currently we are trying to plan our budget, which has to be presented to the Police and Crime Panel before the end of January. We have had an additional chunk of money lopped off and we have only just (18 Dec) received notification of the increase in the amount of council tax paid towards policing that would trigger a referendum.
“We are making every effort to find efficiencies that will enable us to protect local policing services, but there is only so much juice in one orange. We cannot keep taking money out of our budget without it impacting on the way services are delivered.”
With regard to top slicing the Commissioner added: “This is a budget cut by stealth, taking money from one pot in order to fund another. The result is less money for policing in Derbyshire.”
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Posted on Friday 19th December 2014