Council Tax increase to foot bill for £6.9m extra funding of Beds Police

Council Tax payers in Bedfordshire will face an increase to help foot the bill for £6.9m extra funding of Beds Police, it has been revealed.

By Stewart Carr
Monday, 21st December 2020, 6:22 am
Updated Wednesday, 23rd December 2020, 9:06 pm

The government has given permission for police bosses across the country to increase the police precept of Council Tax.

In a statement, Beds Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Kathryn Holloway said: "Additional funding for Bedfordshire Police is what I have been striving for, so it is always good news when this is received.

"The £6.9m increase will pay for a further 53 officers, 2 of whom will be for our regional response to serious and organised crime.

Police (stock image)

"However, the additional £6.9m is only achieved by me, as PCC, increasing the annual Council Tax bill for policing from £212.09 to £227.09 per annum."

Several politicians in Bedfordshire have praised the additional funding for the force.

South West Beds MP Andrew Selous said: "Officers and staff at Bedfordshire Police have been instrumental in keeping our community safe this year, and I pay tribute to them for their hard work and professionalism. I am delighted to see Bedfordshire Police getting an additional £6.9m next year.”

Festus Akinbusoye, Conservative Party candidate in next May's PCC election, added: “I am delighted to see our police force getting nearly £7m 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.

“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.

“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.”