Police Grant Report

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister – in the House of Commons at 2:47 pm on 3rd February 2010.

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Photo of Paul Holmes Paul Holmes Liberal Democrat, Chesterfield 2:47 pm, 3rd February 2010

Yes, the authorities have made great steps forward in that regard. Some criticisms have been levelled about police forces not collaborating, but the Derbyshire police authority always says that that is not true of the east midlands forces, and points to what successful collaboration there has been. It is also looking at further collaboration, so there are things that can be done. However, if £2 billion-worth of cumulative efficiency savings have already been made across police authorities- percentage-wise, the saving in Derbyshire will have been higher than in other areas because it has had to make savings as a result of being underfunded by £5 million a year-how much more flab can be cut? How many more resources can be redirected into front-line policing? Given that 88 per cent. of police budgets are staffing costs, a demand for more and more efficiency savings must mean much more civilianisation, which has already gone on apace. How much further can authorities go without taking real police off the streets? Alternatively, efficiency savings will mean a loss of uniformed officer numbers, so the phrase "efficiency savings" is a euphemism for cuts.

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