THE Government has given Cheshire police leave to spend £117.6m in 2008/9, which is an increase of £2.9m or 2.5% on the current financial year.
This is equivalent to adding an extra 6.9% to the Council Tax bill on the average Band D property, bringing it to £116.03.
But both the county’s chief constable and police authority chairman say it is not enough and predict cuts of up to 100 officers unless it can be increased.
Cheshire Constabulary’s latest funding settlement has just been announced by Home Secretary Jacqui Smith.
Nationally, she announced that £10 billion a year will be going into policing by 2010/11.
She said the general grant funding base level will be set at 2.5% for the next three years so that each police authority in England and Wales was guaranteed an increase of at least this level in each year.
Funding for neighbourhood policing will increase by an average of 2.7% each year.
Ms Smith said the settlement demonstrated the Government’s commitment to preventing and tackling crime and “driving stronger partnerships to make our communities safer.”
The funding, she added, will be backed by a programme of reform to streamline processes and further improve working practices to increase the productivity and accountability of the police.
On top of its £117.6 in general grants Cheshire Constabulary will receive an estimated £15m from a range of other Government funding.
£2.86m in special formula grant, consolidating former specific grants for such things as rural policing
£4.17m from the crime-fighting fund
£4.60m from the Neighbourhood Policing Fund/CSO funding
£3.11m in capital provision
Final force budget is £157.4m – an increase of 4.7% or £7.1m.
Home Office figures show police numbers in Cheshire on March 31 this year were 2,192 officers. This is 146 more than in March 1997.
Cheshire had 1,239 police support staff - 504 more than March 1997.
There were also 176 Community Support Officers and 291 Special Constables.