Merger refund a start, but local police still need a fairer deal

February 23, 2007 2:03 PM
Lib Dem Councillors campaigning for a fair deal for Derbyshire Police

Derby needs more police on the beat. When will the government start properly funding our police?

Lucy Care, Lib Dem Parliamentary Spokesperson for Derby North, has welcomed news that Derbyshire Police are to be refunded the money they spent preparing for the merger of police forces in the East Midlands.

Derbyshire Police spent almost £300,000 preparing for possible merger. Last year after the government postponed its plans for the mergers indefinitely, it initially offered to refund Derbyshire Police about only £36,000 of the costs. Derbyshire Police Authority argued for the money to be refunded in full and local Liberal Democrats have continued to campaign on the issue, publicising this unfairness across the city. The government has seen reason following this two-pronged attack, and has announced that it will refund the money in full.

Councillor Lucy Care said "We also took this issue up in the Council. We proposed a motion calling for our Police Authority to be refunded the merger costs in full. The motion also demanded fair funding for Derbyshire Police.

"It is good news that our police are getting the merger costs refunded. But Mr Blair needs to go further than this. According to their own assessments, the government plan to under fund our local police by nearly £11 million over the next two years. It is time for the government to give a commitment to fund our local police force fairly."