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RESPONSE TO THE NATIONAL AUDIT OFFICE REPORT FINANCIAL SUSTAINABILITY OF POLICE FORCES

Alan Billings Official

Dr Alan Billings, South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner said: “This is a very worrying report because it reveals that the government is in denial about the impact cuts in the funding of policing is having on the service.

“The government's formula for funding police forces is deeply flawed.

“The government is trying to shift the burden of paying for police from central government to the council tax payer. But this is resulting in poorer areas of the country, where there are higher levels of crime, such as South Yorkshire, coming out worse than the wealthy counties such as Surrey where crime is lower.

“In Surrey a small increase in council tax brings in a substantial sum, but this is not so in South Yorkshire because most properties here are in Bands A and B, not G or H.

“Similarly a cut in grant hits South Yorkshire disproportionately hard.

“Poorer areas are having to use more and more of their reserves simply to keep the service running at the present level. Since reserves are a finite resource there is a limit to how long this can be repeated.

“We need a new formula that is fair across the country otherwise policing in some places will face real jeopardy as their reserves run out.”

Posted on Tuesday 11th September 2018
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