PCC response to Public Accounts Committee report on the financial sustainability of police forces (7 Nov 2018)

Responding to the Public Accounts Committee report on the financial sustainability of police forces, West Yorkshire's Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), Mark Burns-Williamson said:

"This report again further highlights, on the back of the recent National Audit Office and Home Affairs Select Committee reports, the significant challenges that policing is currently facing, painting a consistent picture which the Government must now take heed of.

"Together with other Police and Crime Commissioners, I have very been clear that policing is under huge pressure; that demand on the service is increasing, as is the complexity of the cases that forces are having to deal with.

"In my national role as Chair of the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC), I have been working closely with the National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) and the Home Office to review demand and resources in preparing a comprehensive submission in the run up to the next Government spending review.

"The prolonged period in not addressing how the national funding formula is allocated has contributed to the uncertainty, along with the overall reductions in central grant, both of which need to be tackled if the financial position of policing is to improve in the future.

"With regard to the Emergency Services Network programme (replacement radios, etc), there remains real concern that the extension of Airwave could have a big impact on already pressured police budgets. On police reform, in order to fulfil our ambitions in this area, as set out in the Policing Vision 2025, we need to move forward with a multi-year approach to funding programmes, which has the potential to achieve far greater value for money.

"Any further national strategy would need to complement the Policing Vision 2025, which sets out the key outcomes and objectives for policing, alongside those areas where we believe further developments are needed in order to build a police service for the future- something all policing leaders are fully committed to.

"We know the public of West Yorkshire want to see more investment and support for policing services and I will continue to work with the Home Office to resolve the immediate employer pension contributions issue, which threatens to undermine budgets and our joint working for next year in the here and now. At a time of growing concerns and rises in violent crime particularly, this should be at the very top of the Government's priorities."

© Copyright West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner 2019