Announcement on pay acknowledges dedication of officers, says PCC
Responding to the news that the cap on public sector pay rises in England and Wales is to be lifted, with police officers to receive a 1% rise plus a 1% bonus, Sussex PCC Katy Bourne says: “The Government’s announcement on police pay today goes some way to acknowledging the selfless dedication of police officers and the long period of pay restraint they have worked through.
“Whilst the pay award is modest, it does have implications for our already squeezed police budgets. Based on current assumptions in our medium-term financial strategy, Sussex Police will still have to save £26 million over the next four years.
“That is why I - and other PCCs - have been negotiating with the Government for enhanced core police grant funding, as well as asking for the removal of the current cap on the police precept element of council tax.
“The people of Sussex and our officers and staff deserve more certainty about the funding of policing so I am currently undertaking a comprehensive review of funding held in our reserves.
“This could release resources to continue investment in critical areas such as public protection and counter-terrorism capability and also to help to soften the impact of long-term reductions in local policing numbers.
“As all areas of the public sector make savings and efficiencies, police have had to increasingly fill the void left behind. Around 40% of calls to police are not police matters - this strain on resources also puts additional physical and mental strain on individual officers.
“I want to reassure Sussex officers and staff that I don’t see today’s announcement as the complete picture on police funding and we will have to wait for the provisional police settlement in December to see how successful we have been in securing more investment.”