6p tax rise push in bid to protect police jobs

Clive Grunshaw
Clive Grunshaw
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Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner, Clive Grunshaw, has outlined plans to push through an increase in council tax as he looks to protect jobs.

Mr Grunshaw wants to increase the council tax precept by 1.99 per cent, an average of 6p per week average.

Speaking at the meeting of the Police and Crime Panel at County Hall Mr Grunshaw outlined budget pressures facing the force and raised concerns over a new funding formula which could push savings to £97m by 2020.

The Commissioner told the panel that despite managing cuts well, Lancashire has experienced a rolling 11 per cent increase in crime between September 2015 and 2016.

He said: “The majority of the people in Lancashire want to see our police officer numbers maintained. We have already seen 850 officers and 450 police staff lost from our force since austerity began.

“And now Lancashire could see money diverted to other police areas as the Government looks to change the way it allocates funding.

“I’m not saying that police forces shouldn’t be appropriately funded, but what I am saying is that Government really needs to look at what this will do to forces such as Lancashire.

“It really is a question of the more you take out, the more likely you are to see crime increase. Lancashire has managed the cuts well and crime fell for four years despite massive reductions, we’re reaching tipping point and our MPs need to join the fight.”

Mr Grunshaw is writing to all council leaders and MPs urging them to lobby Government to put extra funding into policing.