Cambridgeshire Police funding in 2020 – have your say

How much should we pay for policing Hatley?


Cambridgeshire Police and Crime Commissioner logo

The second biggest portion of our council tax goes to the police – these are the 2019 / 2020 costs for a Band D household:

County Council – £1,217.13
Police – £222.66
SCDC – £145.31*
Adult social care – £94.98
Hatley Parish precept – £74.03**
Fire – £70.74

As he plans the budget for policing Cambridgeshire and Peterborough in 2020/21, Ray Bisby, the Acting Police and Crime Commissioner, is ‘keen’ to understand our views on funding ‘our’ police service.

Use this link to his survey form to have your say – it’s mostly tick boxes (conveniently poised to make you agree more resources for the police is good). There’s also a box for comments – an opportunity to mention points not covered in the opening spiel on road safety, anti-social behaviour, property protection and why small villages like Hatley deserve a fair share of police time and resource.  The survey runs until Monday, 27th January.

It seems last year we said we wanted to see more officers in our communities – which led to a 12% increase in the policing part of our council tax.

This, apparently, has seen police officer numbers reach record levels in Cambridgeshire – according to the press release which generated this news item, an additional 50 officers were recruited ‘with the aim of increasing visible neighbourhood policing as well as supporting a partnership approach to crime prevention’.

While Cambridgeshire is considered to be ‘a safe county’, according to the release, ‘the police have to spend more time tackling the growing complexity of crimes such as domestic abuse, child sexual exploitation, modern day slavery and drug dealing known as ‘county lines’.’

The government has announced funding for 20,000 new officers across the country, 62 of which will join the Cambridgeshire force over the coming year. Although the cost for these extra officers is being met by the government, the existing 1,500 officers in Cambridgeshire and the infrastructure which supports them ‘still needs maintaining and developing, bringing cost pressures, not least from inflation’.

In Cambridgeshire, police funding comes from two main sources: a central government grant (just over half) and the remainder from the policing part of our council tax.

“While the nationally funded additional officers are very welcome, we face some challenging realities,” says the Acting Commissioner.

“Our police force remains one of the lowest funded forces in the country and with the county’s population set to grow by 20% by 2031, we need to make sure our police service meets the needs of our growing communities.”

The government will announce the amount by which the policing part of council tax can be raised in due course and the Commissioner will seek to follow that guidance.

As an indication, a 2% increase on a Band D property will add £4.45 to the police precept – taking it almost £19 / month (from £18.55).

*   SCDC is planning a £5 / 3.441% increase in its council tax take for 2020/21 – as noted in this press release issued 14th January 2020 (fifth paragraph).

** Croydon Parish precept is £30.81, Longstowe £58.20, Arrington Parish £71.56, Bassingbourn £73.29 and Gamlingay Parish £135.94.  All figures from the SCDC website.

† Views can also be given by phone: 0300 333 3456 or by e-mail: cambs-pcc@cambs.pnn.police.uk.

Post created 10th January 2020 – updated 14th January 2020.