Future policing concerns in Lincolnshire raised in report

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A REPORT has raised concerns about how funding cuts have impacted on policing in Lincolnshire.

HM Inspectorate of Constabulary, known as HMIC, released a report on Monday which said the Lincolnshire force was one of three which were at risk of not being able to provide a “sufficiently efficient or effective service”.

The other two forces it has concerns about are the Metropolitan Police and the Devon and Cornwall force.

In a statement Lincolnshire Police said it “welcomed” the report.

The statement said: “We are considering the rich contextual information it now provides that enable us to look at the Lincolnshire position alongside other forces.

“The report requires careful reading and analysis, which is now taking place.”

The statement said the force and the police authority were committed to delivering “excellent public service and good value for tax payers’ money”.

Lincolnshire Police has said in recent years it has been under-funded.

The HMIC report said Lincolnshire Police still had “some way to go in order to identify all the savings it needs to find to balance its books”.

The force needs to save £21m between 2011 and 2015 and has identified how to save 85 per cent of that amount.

The report said there would be an 11 per cent reduction in police officers, compared with the 10 per cent average across England and Wales. By 2015, 84 per cent of the workforce would be in frontline roles but the report said more than 500 staff have been outsourced.

Security company G4S, which signed a £200m deal with Lincolnshire Police Authority to provide support services to the force, has announced the force has made 14 per cent of savings since April and recruited 23 new police officers.

Meanwhile, HMIC said Leicestershire Police had reduced crime by seven per cent, compared to the national average of three per cent, and was on track to achieve the savings required by 2015.