VIDEO: Policing minister announces new review into funding for Lincolnshire Police
The Government minister for policing and crime visited the county today to hear about the need for more funding.
MP Mike Penning met with local representatives in Lincoln and Boston after concerns were raised about the funding cuts to Lincolnshire Police.
The visit was prompted by Home Secretary Theresa May following a letter by chief con Neil Rhodes about his ‘grave concerns’ for the future of the force.
“We are going to have a new funding formula looked at,” Mr Penning said.
“Lincolnshire Police are telling me they’re really going to struggle in 2016/17 if they are to continue to deliver what the community really need here.”
He said a ‘deep dive’ task force team from the Home Office was due in the county next week as part of a review into the funding and to look at how the demographics of the area have changed.
He added: “I do understand that there are real issues and specialist policing that’s needed in Lincolnshire and we need to make sure they get the funding to do that.”
Lincolnshire currently receives less funding per capita population that other areas of the UK. And yet police had managed to cut crime across the county on a tight budget.
Mr Penning said Lincolnshire was a victim of an ‘old-fashioned funding formula’ - but acknowledged some of the bigger towns had issues with organised crime and cyber crime, not traditionally associated with rural areas.
On his visit to Boston, Mr Penning was shown around the Market Place by representatives of Boston Borough Council, and discussed the new street-drinking ban now in force.
He was then given a tour of the authority’s high-tech CCTV suite.
Following his visit to the county, chief con Neil Rhodes and Lincolnshire Police Crime Commissioner Alan Hardwick said they were ‘both pleased and encouraged’ after meeting with the MP.