We wrote a few weeks ago about the latest Police financial settlement for Lancashire, increased by £6.8m, but the Commissioner wasn’t impressed as it “doesn’t even cover the increase to employer pension contributions for policing, announced in September”.
The real world consequences of dealing with this pensions deficit alone, is forecast to cost Lancashire Constabulary around £7.1m per year from 19/20, the equivalent to over 150 police officers.
However, since 2010 Lancashire Constabulary has had to make over £84m of savings as a direct result of the Government cutting £50m of central funding during the same period, with an additional £18m of savings required by 2022. In the same period Lancashire has lost 800 police officer posts and 350 support staff, meaning there are increasingly fewer places where savings can be made. Despite the cuts, the Constabulary is still deemed to be efficient and effective by external inspectors .
Clive Grunshaw says “I strongly believe that more funding should come from the Government and I will continue to lobby the Home Secretary and Policing Minister. The current funding for policing isn’t sufficient to deal with growing demands on the police and the financial settlement allows me to raise further funds but only through passing this burden onto council tax payers. This isn’t fair and it isn’t sustainable.
“However, raising funds through council tax contributions is the only option the Government have given me to protect and bolster policing and if I did not consider this, it would mean a cut to our budget. There are over a million calls for service every year to Lancashire Police and investment is needed to keep up with ever increasing demands on policing and to deliver a service the public expect. Police officers and staff are working round the clock to keep people safe but, they are over stretched”.
Well, Mr Grunshaw, we’ve said it before, but you want us pensioners to pay out of our limited incomes to make sure your police pensioners receive full pensions, and as far as I’m concerned the answer is no, enough is enough. The precept we already pay increases year on year. For 2018/2019 your Band D precept rose by 7.25% [https://www.westlancs.gov.uk/bills-benefits/council-tax/rates-and-banding.aspx ] .How we pensioners wish OUR pensions rose so much! Learn to live within your means, and don’t make pensioners your only option!