The government announced today it is increasing funding for policing to more than £15 billion in 2021-22, up by £636 million from 2020-21. Bedfordshire Police is set to receive an additional £6.9m as part of this settlement, a 5.7% increase and higher than the national average.
Festus Akinbusoye, the Conservative Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) candidate for the May 2021 election has welcomed the record cash budget awarded to Bedfordshire Police:
“I am delighted to see our police force getting nearly £7 million additional funding next year. It was a huge honour for me to work on the frontline alongside our officers at Bedfordshire police as a Special Constable until recently. They are instrumental in keeping our community safe and I pay tribute to them for their hard work and professionalism.”
The additional funding will be used to increase police officer numbers and keep communities safe. This increase in funding includes over £400 million to recruit 20,000 extra police officers by 2023, delivering on the promise made by the Conservatives in last year’s General Election. Bedfordshire Police has already benefited from an additional 54 officers as part of the first tranche. The second tranche will see Bedfordshire Police recruit an additional 53 officers as part of this manifesto commitment.
Bedfordshire Police's total budget will reach its highest in cash terms at £129 million for 2021/22. Up from £122 million in 2020/21 and £99.6 million in 2015/16.
“While I certainly welcome this increase and the growth in officer numbers, I want the government to go further in addressing the historic and current funding formula which treats Bedfordshire as a rural policing area, even though we have similar policing demands as do larger metropolitan areas.”
“I want to bring back community-based policing; tackle gun, gang and knife crime - and place law-abiding citizens at the very heart of our policing priorities, if elected as Bedfordshire’s next Police and Crime Commissioner.”
“Having this added funding will help massively in delivering these for our local residents and businesses. We will be able to boost community-based policing for our urban and rural communities and better deliver the outstanding quality of policing our area deserves.”