Sentencing White Paper

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:40 pm on 16th September 2020.

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Photo of Robert Buckland Robert Buckland The Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice 12:40 pm, 16th September 2020

The hon. Gentleman will be glad to know that within a month of my taking office we secured £2.5 billion for the biggest prison building project in years. I am keeping a close eye and tight rein on the project delivery unit that will be doing that. We have the model in place; the Wellingborough prison model is one we can replicate, so we do not need to keep changing the specification and make the same old mistakes on Government procurement. The commitment is absolutely clear, and the money is in place. Last year, the Department obtained a near 5% increase in its revenue budget, which was the biggest single increase in years. We have just secured one of the biggest single injections into prison maintenance budgets in years. Although I do not pretend that I can claim to be as rich as Croesus when it comes to Justice budgets, we are definitely in a better place than we were, and I look forward to the spending round negotiations ahead with relish.