Lancashire Constabulary is to get £3.7m extra from the Government next year to create its biggest hand out since 2014.

Police funding figures have been released for 2019/20. Lancashire police is to get 3.7m more than last yearPolice funding figures have been released for 2019/20. Lancashire police is to get 3.7m more than last year
Police funding figures have been released for 2019/20. Lancashire police is to get 3.7m more than last year
The resource allocations for England and Wales in 2019/20 have been announced by the Home Office, with a total of £4.14bn being handed out nationwide.

Lancashire is set to get £193,744,884, compared to £190,023,747 for the current year, but the grant can be topped up with extra money from the police precept added on top of next year's council tax.

And the Government, recognising pressures on police forces, has increased that council tax limit that Police and Crime Commissioner's across the country, can apply.

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The total extra funding has been welcomed by Blackpool North and Cleveleys Conservative MP Paul Maynard and he has urged that the council tax precept is kept as low as possible to ease the burden on residents.

MP Paul MaynardMP Paul Maynard
MP Paul Maynard

Additionally the Government has announced an extra £3.1m specifically to be used for police pensions in Lancashire.

But Lancashire's Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw expressed concern at the settlement and said the total handout would not cover the extra the county force must find to cover increased pension contributions, meaning another year of cuts.

Mr Maynard said: “This demonstrates the Government’s clear commitment to fund our police and protect our communities.

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“The Home Secretary has listened to officers and to senior figures in law enforcement and this announcement demonstrates a commitment to our police.

PCC Clive GrunshawPCC Clive Grunshaw
PCC Clive Grunshaw

“This is the biggest single increase in funding since 2010 and comes alongside a commitment to ensure police have the resources they need.”

Funding raised through Council Tax can be increased by up to £24 for a Band D property. However, it is up to Police and Crime Commissioners to decide the increase for their local force.

Mr Maynard said: “It is ultimately up to the commissioner to decide whether he wishes to take up the full funding the Government has permitted him to raise.

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“I trust our Police and Crime Commissioner will do the right thing for the people of Lancashire.”

But Mr Grunshaw said the Government had again passed the burden of the cost of policing onto council tax payers despite forces nationally having met every requirement the Police Minister Nick Hurd set in the 2018/19 settlement to secure the funding arrangement made for 2019/20, including £120m of savings nationally.

He added that he real world consequences of dealing with this pensions deficit is forecast to cost Lancashire Constabulary around £7.1m per year from 19/20 – the equivalent to over 150 police officers.

He said: "Through this announcement the Government has once again failed to provide additional money towards front line policing, with any additional money from central Government covering the costs of the unfunded increase in police pensions, which undermined all previous planned budget assumptions.

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"Once again the Government has passed the buck onto council tax payers and failed to address the concerns raised up and down the country that after eight years of budget cuts, removing £84m – equivalent to over 25% of the budget in 2010/11 - from policing in Lancashire with a further £18m still to find over the next few years.

"The ability to invest in our policing teams and meet the pressures on the service is completely reliant on raising Council Tax by the highest amount we can. The Government know this and once again are failing to be honest with the public, failing to address the actual cause which is years of austerity in policing.

"This announcement, whilst on the face of it a step in the right direction, doesn't come close to addressing the issues faced by Lancashire police after cutting too far and too fast for the last seven years."