Cumbria Police to get council tax increase to help maintain front line police strength

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A COUNCIL tax increase is being imposed to help Cumbria Police maintain front line officer numbers over the next two years.

The budget set by the county's Police and Crime Commissioner Richard Rhodes will mean a 1.95 per cent increase in council tax precept for 2013-14.

In contrast, both South Lakeland District Council and Cumbria County Council have frozen council tax rates for a further year.

Mr Rhodes said the rise - which represents £3.87 a year for a Band D property - will allow police officer and PCSO numbers to remain at 1,134 and 95 respectively up to 2015-16.

Today, he set the policing budget for 2013-14 and provisional estimates to 2016-17, by which he expects 64 officer posts may be lost.

Mr Rhodes said: "The policing budget will have reduced overall by a fifth by 2016-17 and that is not without its challenges as it is important to maintain performance and keep Cumbria safe.

"So far £12.1 million of savings have been achieved and financial forecasts indicate that £10.2 million of savings will have to be delivered between 2013-14 and 2016-17.

"It is clear from the people of Cumbria and the Police and Crime Panel that frontline officers tackling anti-social behaviour, domestic violence and road safety are key areas.

"The approved budget allows police officer and PCSO numbers to remain at 1134 and 95 respectively for two years but current predictions indicate that there may be a loss of 64 officer posts by 2017.

"As a result the police part of the council tax precept will increase by 1.95 per cent, which is £3.87 a year for a Band D property - slightly more than 1p a day.

"Going forward we will fully engage with the Home Office on any debate that takes place on the grant funding formula as any change to the funding formula would have a significant impact on future funding.”

Temporary Chief Constable Lawson said: "It is important to secure funding that allows the constabulary to best deliver its policing services in these difficult times. For two years we can maintain our current police officer and PCSO numbers to deliver our policing services into the heart of our communities.”

Comments (3)

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1:58pm Tue 26 Feb 13

Hoad Hill says...

Once again the Police precept is being increased by the maximum permitted amount.
Since 1998, this precept has increased by 182.9%, yet during the same period the Cumbria CC and SLDC share of the Council Tax has only increased by 83% and 78% respectively.
The unelected Police Authority used to be blamed for this profligacy but it now seems that our elected Police and Crime Commissioner intends to demonstrate the same contempt for the public.
The Cumbria police precept has historically been one of the highest in the country; indeed the planned merger with the Lancashire force was abandoned because the government wouldn't allow equalisation of the precepts by increasing that for Lancashire to the level in Cumbria.
In a county with an extremely low level of crime I would question why these increases have been and are continuing to be imposed but I suspect the answer would simply be "because we can!"
In 1998 the police precept was 26% lower than the SLDC share of the council tax, it is now 17% higher.
The increase in pounds for a Band D property is irrelevant, it's the percentage increase that matters.
Once again the Police precept is being increased by the maximum permitted amount. Since 1998, this precept has increased by 182.9%, yet during the same period the Cumbria CC and SLDC share of the Council Tax has only increased by 83% and 78% respectively. The unelected Police Authority used to be blamed for this profligacy but it now seems that our elected Police and Crime Commissioner intends to demonstrate the same contempt for the public. The Cumbria police precept has historically been one of the highest in the country; indeed the planned merger with the Lancashire force was abandoned because the government wouldn't allow equalisation of the precepts by increasing that for Lancashire to the level in Cumbria. In a county with an extremely low level of crime I would question why these increases have been and are continuing to be imposed but I suspect the answer would simply be "because we can!" In 1998 the police precept was 26% lower than the SLDC share of the council tax, it is now 17% higher. The increase in pounds for a Band D property is irrelevant, it's the percentage increase that matters. Hoad Hill
  • Score: 0

6:59pm Tue 26 Feb 13

Whinfell says...

Well said!
Do you know how much of their increased budget is paying for overtime,officers or staff off work because of stress and illness,staff who are suspended yet they are still being paid in full,staff who are recieving lump sum pay offs,non staffing costs like ICT equipment?
I would love to know where my hard earned tax money is actually going to.
Well said! Do you know how much of their increased budget is paying for overtime,officers or staff off work because of stress and illness,staff who are suspended yet they are still being paid in full,staff who are recieving lump sum pay offs,non staffing costs like ICT equipment? I would love to know where my hard earned tax money is actually going to. Whinfell
  • Score: 0

8:01am Wed 27 Feb 13

onelocal says...

There was a report in the WG a couple of months ago that the newly elected PCC intended to give £100,000 to each of the district councils to fight anti-social behavior. So the PCC puts up the police precept to give to the councils. If this is true, isn't this a council tax increase by another name.
There was a report in the WG a couple of months ago that the newly elected PCC intended to give £100,000 to each of the district councils to fight anti-social behavior. So the PCC puts up the police precept to give to the councils. If this is true, isn't this a council tax increase by another name. onelocal
  • Score: 0

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