THE Government has today (Thursday 13 December) announced the largest increase in police funding since 2010.
The provisional police funding settlement of up to £14 billion for 2019-20 is up to £970 million more than the previous year. It will enable the police to meet financial pressures and respond effectively to the changing and increasingly complex crimes they face.
Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) will receive:
- £7.8 billion in general Government grants, which is £161 million more than the previous year.
- More money to spend locally. The council tax referendum threshold will be £24 for a Band D property. If PCCs ask households to contribute an extra £2 a month, this would generate around £510 million in additional funding.
The settlement demonstrates the Home Office’s commitment to fighting serious and organised crime, including economic crime and drug trafficking, with a £90 million investment in national, regional and local capabilities.
Home Secretary Sajid Javid said: “Since becoming Home Secretary I have been clear I would prioritise police funding, and today I have delivered on that promise.
“This is a significant funding settlement that provides the most substantial police funding increase since 2010, with more money for local police forces, counter terrorism and tackling serious and organised crime.
“It will enable the police to recruit more officers and be better placed to respond to the increasingly complex crimes they face.”
As announced by the Chancellor in the Budget, funding for counter-terrorism policing will increase by £59 million in 2019/20 to £816 million, which is £160 million more than we planned at the last Spending Review, maintaining the commitment to provide the resources needed to keep the public safe.
There is also £153 million specifically to help policing meet increased pensions costs next year – estimated at around £330 million.
Minister for Policing and the Fire Service, Nick Hurd, said: “We recognise the police face significant financial pressures in the coming year.
“This settlement offers a substantial increase in funding for the whole police system to ensure forces recruit, meet local priorities and continue to improve efficiency to free up resources for the front line.”
Staffordshire’s Commissioner for Police, Fire and Rescue and Crime, Matthew Ellis broadly welcomed the settlement today.
He said: “This settlement for policing is the result of significant lobbying by Commissioners, parliamentary colleagues in Staffordshire and police services. This wasn’t expected even three months ago and it is welcomed.
“Whilst helpful, the pressures on policing through increasing demand, the changing nature of crime and the wider security implications police have to deal with, means finances and resources are still exceptionally tight.
“It is absolutely vital the most local policing, which is precious to communities, continues to be supported and in Staffordshire, we build on the extra officers I promised last year, that are now being recruited.
“Plans are progressing well to make significant savings and pragmatic improvements in the new close partnership between the fire and rescue service and police. This will help services meet the necessary demands of the future. Although it’s not going to be easy.”
The Commissioner will start a public consultation next week on the budget and precept. Ahead of that, he will meet with the Police, Fire and Crime Panel tomorrow (Friday, Dec 14) to discuss implications for Staffordshire, ahead of making his precept proposal in January.
Staffordshire Chief Constable Gareth Morgan welcomed the Government’s announcement of the police funding settlement today, he saiud: “Staffordshire Police has worked hard to transform how we operate and has delivered significant savings and efficiencies over the past few years. However, like other forces, we continue to face rising and increasingly complex demand and against this backdrop we welcome today’s announcement of additional funding for policing through the police grant.
“Increased flexibility through the council tax precept is also good news and I hope that the Staffordshire Commissioner will take the opportunity to maximise the investment available to support the delivery of the Policing Plan priorities and address the issues which matter most to local communities, following a period of public consultation.”