Greater Manchester leaders have backed Mayor and Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd’s £5 plan to protect policing.
The proposed rise comes after the government failed, despite their promises, to protect local policing budgets, leaving Greater Manchester Police needing to find savings of £14m this year. This is on top of £180m and 2,000 officers axed since 2010 as a result of government-imposed cuts.
Tony said: “The irresponsible actions of this government have left me with no choice but to ask the people of Greater Manchester to contribute a little bit more – just over a penny a day – to help maintain a strong and effective police service. I, of course, recognise that in this era of austerity, local people are facing financial challenges of their own, and it is with great reluctance that I put forward this proposal.
“I’m pleased that council leaders have supported me in this decision. Like policing, local authority budgets are also under pressure. But the reality is that without this increase, more officers will disappear from our streets.”
Tony has committed to invest the additional £3.6m raised by the increase in council tax in frontline policing and ensuring the police service reflects the diverse communities it serves. The money raised is the equivalent needed to maintain 70 police officers on our streets.
“For the first time in five years, GMP is now recruiting new officers to shore-up the service, bringing new blood and new ideas,” adds Tony.
“This provides an opportunity to increase the diversity of GMP and I’m pleased to see that of the 100 most recent recruits from local communities, more than a third are from black and minority ethnic backgrounds.”
Tony presented his report on his proposals to the Police and Crime Panel today (Friday 27 January).
The report also highlights areas of investment and challenge, including the transformation of GMP’s IT systems, the rollout of body-worn video and mobile devices to improve public confidence and visibility of local officers, and investment in innovative projects to tackle complex issues such as female genital mutilation, domestic abuse and reoffending.
Tony will formally set his budget in February.