The Government have provided Cleveland Police with £3.1m more cash in 2019/20 than in 2018/19, HOWEVER they have also increased the amount that Cleveland Police needs to pay into the Police Pension Fund by £3.0m.
So when inflation, pay increases and other rising costs are taken into account this is, in reality, another significant cut to our policing budget next year.
The Government has announced additional flexibility for PCCs around the police precept - the policing element of the council tax - which means that I can increase the amount paid by a Band D property by up to £24 a year.
I understand that this means more people, who are already struggling in Cleveland, would need to pay more and the burden for trying to maintain services falls to local taxpayers instead of being addressed nationally.
I am therefore consulting on whether people are prepared to pay more - to maintain policing within Cleveland through an increase in the police element of their council tax.
Increasing the Band D ‘Police Precept’ by £24 per year (or an extra £2 per month) would see the Band D Police Precept set at £250.54 for 2019/20 and would result in the following amounts being paid for Policing within Cleveland.
Precept Proposal 2019-20
|Property Band ||Council Tax |
(2 Decimal Places)
|Annual Increase ||Weekly Increase|
I want to listen to public and stakeholder views before reaching my final view, but I am minded to take the option of maximising police funding by proposing a £24 increase, which would raise around £3.6m in additional precept (above the amount raised in 2018/19). This will enable me to firstly maintain current services and then provide some scope to invest in Community Policing.
It is important to recognise that without the proposed £2 per month increase in precept, Cleveland Police will need to make significant further cuts on top of those that have already been imposed through reduced Government Funding over the last eight years.
The Government has acknowledged the significant increase in demand on the police to tackle domestic abuse, modern slavery, child sex exploitation and cyber-crime but has not made any extra resources available locally. I will continue to do everything I can to help to protect community policing, including driving out maximum value from procurement savings, digital technology and investing in the development and wellbeing of our highly-valued workforce.
However, unlike many Forces we have already reduced our one-off reserves to their lowest possible level, and I cannot protect and improve vital community policing services through improvements in effectiveness and efficiency alone.
I am therefore asking whether you are prepared to pay an extra £2 per month, or an increase of £16 - £24 per year for Band A-D properties, to support Policing Services in Cleveland.
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