WARWICKSHIRE Police and Crime Commissioner Ron Ball today (Friday) pledged to protect frontline policing in the county despite next year’s budget being £5 million less than this year’s.
He said: “Policing budgets are continuing to be squeezed. I have been analysing the effects of the reductions in next year’s budget and how that will impact on policing in Warwickshire.
Thanks to the foundations laid in my first budget last year, prudent management by the Police Authority in previous years, and our strategic alliance with West Mercia, I am proposing a plan which will provide reassurance to the people of Warwickshire despite the budget next year being £5m less than this year.”
He is proposing to:
• Bring forward officer recruitment to ensure that numbers are maintained across the force and are not affected by any retirements.
• Maintain 100 police and community support officers— 24 more than planned in the original alliance blueprint.
• Increase the number of special constables from 262 to 314, giving Warwickshire the highest proportion of specials in the country.
• Allocate £800,000 to community safety.
• A repeat of the initiative last year with £300,000 from the £800,000 mentioned above available for groups with innovative bids in the community safety area.
• A commitment to Operation X, targeting the county’s most determined criminals.
• £1.5 million across the alliance to target cyber crime, rural crime and business crime.
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