PCC calls on Chancellor for change over damaging funding announcements (24 Oct 2018)

The West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner has written an open letter to the Chancellor of the Exchequer raising concerns about the huge impact of a recent announcement around unfunded employer pension contributions across Policing.

Click here to view the letter

The Treasury's valuation of the National Police Pension Scheme looks to existing Police budgets to meet current deficits.

This increase in employer pension contribution would equate to a net cost of £6.6m in 2019-20 in West Yorkshire alone, amounting to £165m nationally.

Beyond 2020, it is anticipated that the figure would rise to around £18m annually in West Yorkshire and £400m nationally.

It would potentially represent 400 fewer officers in the county and 10,000 collectively across England and Wales.

Mark Burns-Williamson met with the Policing Minister yesterday to share his concerns and has highlighted the issue among MPs locally as an urgent matter.

West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Mark Burns-Williamson said:

"As Chair of the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC), I feel I have no option but to put pen to paper following our general meeting last week to raise concerns on behalf of all PCCs about this unexpected and unwelcome announcement.

"This will put a detrimental hole in policing funding, undermining budget planning by PCCs and Chiefs which we have undertaken following our two-year agreement with the Home Office for this year and next, including plans to recruit more officers.

"Whilst we want to see police officers receive fair pensions, this change affects employers' contributions only and will have a detrimental impact on our ability to recruit.

"This announcement from the Treasury comes at a time when Policing continues to be under huge pressure, tackling demands around serious and violent crime and our ability to sustain Neighbourhood Policing and undertake major investigations.

"The bottom line is that the additional monies raised by PCCs through the £12 extra on the Police Council Tax will be all but wiped out to pay for this, therefore seeing little or no growth in policing numbers and breaking the arrangements we thought we had agreed with the Home Office. We are simply not prepared for the public to be misled in this way.

"There was unanimous agreement that we as an APCC need to urgently raise this at the very highest levels in Government to seek an immediate resolution and for common sense to prevail. We know the public want to see more investment in policing and we have a duty to make them aware."

© Copyright West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner 2019