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  1. Published on: 01/02/2024 08:46 PMReported by: rogerblaxall
    Lancashire is set for even more police officers, after Police and Crime Commissioner Andrew Snowden outlined his commitment to fight crime and protect people, as he presented his 2024/25 budget proposals at a meeting of the Police and Crime Panel yesterday, 31st January 2024.

    Lancashire’s streets will continue to see more police patrols to tackle antisocial behaviour and drug hotspots, alongside investment into the force wide crackdown on criminal gangs, force digital capacities, and the force Roads Policing teams to target dangerous driving, as part of Commissioner Snowden’s plans for the forthcoming year.

    There will be funding to maintain the 612 extra police officers recruited as part of the Government Uplift programme. Alongside this, a £1m investment will see the first 20 officers recruited for Neighbourhood Policing Teams across the county, with 40 more to follow over the next two years.

    The budget proposal includes a small rise in council tax precept, the equivalent of 23p a week for a band D property, or 15p a week for a Band A property. This is below the maximum rise set out by Government, and the Commissioner has pledged to ensure frontline policing is protected to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour.

    Mr. Snowden said: “I am determined to see more bobbies on the beat, increases in arrests, more cash and drugs seized off criminals, and ultimately for crime to continue to fall in Lancashire.
    “My budget for 2024/25 is about continuing the investment I have made in frontline policing – keeping our local police stations open, recruiting more officers to increase the visible presence on our streets, and investing in specialist teams such as the Roads Policing Teams and the Anti-Social Behaviour Unit.

    “Lancashire Constabulary has already recruited 612 additional officers, the county wide crackdown on antisocial behaviour through Op Centurion has already delivered more than 14,000 extra hours of Officers walking the beat and Op Warrior has seen over 1,400 crime gang suspects arrested in Lancashire.

    “The investments I want to make in this budget will ensure that we can keep up this momentum, build on our successes and push on with my mission to deliver more visible policing, taking the fight to criminals.

    “85% of residents who responded to my recent budget survey would like to see Lancashire Constabulary receive more funding. Every penny of the 4.75% rise in council tax precept for 2024/25 will be spent on your priorities and increase visible policing to crack down on crime and ASB and keep Lancashire safe.”

    Chief Constable Chris Rowley said: “I appreciate the support of the PCC, the Police & Crime Panel and the community in enabling the Constabulary to continue to prioritise the areas of policing that will make the most difference to our communities.

    “Our aim is to protect all of those living and working in Lancashire, and those travelling to the county, keeping them safe by tackling the issues that matter to them.

    “We must continue to target serious criminality, bring offenders to justice, and protect the most vulnerable people. This extra investment will enable us to do just that.”

    The budget was passed with cross-party support by the Police and Crime Panel, which is made up from Councillors representing each area of Lancashire along with independent members. A formal written decision will follow.

    The budget for policing Lancashire in 2024-25 is £394m which includes a 4.75% increase in the portion of the council tax that goes towards policing, known as the police precept, lower than the maximum set at over 5% by Government. This represents approximately 31% of the overall police budget, with Government funding making up the remainder.
     
    Follow the discussion on news at facebook.com/groups/ormskirknews

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