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60 new detectives set to be hired following public survey on local police spending

26th January 2021

Police Commissioner Kim McGuinness is proposing a slight increase in the police precept with the average household set to pay 57p a month more in order to fund new police posts.
The Northumbria Police Commissioner said a 4.99% increase in the policing share of local council tax bills will be invested directly in to the force – with 60 new detectives hired as a result.
The funding plans, to be signed off on Tuesday (February 2), will see bills for a Band A property increase by 38p a month and will raise £2.7m for the police. Government rules this year mean the maximum the Northumbria police precept could have increased by is 10.95%, an increase the Police Commissioner said would be too high given the ongoing financial difficulty many households face.
In two surveys asking for views on how to fund local policing, the majority of people who took part said they would be happy to support some additional investment in their police force.
Police and Crime Commissioner Kim McGuinness said the increase will be used to support a new Police and Crime Plan designed around fighting crime, preventing crime and improving lives.
That plan, to be published later this month, sets the priorities for Northumbria Police for the next four years will include a new focus on tackling serious organised crime at every level.
Ms McGuinness said: “The coronavirus pandemic has drastically changed society, but while we respond to that and work together to get through this, it’s important we are also planning for the future.
“When I asked people what they need from Northumbria Police, they made clear they want a force that is backed to keep us all safe. So I’m today supporting those aims with a funding plan for the biggest targeted recruitment of police investigators in the force’s history.
“Like you, I want a police force that is equipped to get on with the job of targeting and disrupting organised crime, as well as bringing to justice others who break the law.”
The new investigators set to be hired as a result of the increase will be in addition to the more than 300 new officers brought in as part of a record breaking recruitment campaign currently underway at Northumbria Police.
Government recruitment targets allocated to Northumbria Police to date total 366 officers, with 185 being delivered by March 2021 and a further target of 181 by March 2022.
The budget provided by the Commissioner for 2021/22 will include recruitment plans to also replace more than 200 retiring and departing officers in addition to delivery of the Uplift targets set by Government.
In addition, in order to address the increase in demand and complexity of investigations, the Council Tax precept increase proposed by the Commissioner will be used to deliver a further 60 police officer investigator posts in 2021/22, over and above existing recruitment plans and the Uplift target set by government.
Ms McGuiness said: “Government austerity has seen 1,100 police officers lost to the force as a result of cuts worth £140m. The Government said it wants to reverse that austerity, but it is going nowhere near far enough. That’s why I’m working with the chief constable to get more officers in to Northumbria Police and keeping the focus on fighting crime, preventing crime and improving lives.
The proposals are set to be discussed at a meeting of the Police and Crime Panel on February 2nd, where the new Police and Crime Plan will also be presented.