Extra £110 million this year for Metropolitan Police in Mayor's Budget
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, will use his 2018/2019 Budget to invest an additional £110 million into the Metropolitan Police in the next year, boosting officer numbers and helping to combat knife crime. The Budget also includes £15 million for the Young Londoners Fund, and £140 million investment in London’s economy, transport infrastructure and housing.
Keeping Londoners safe
Today’s Budget includes an additional £110 million for the Metropolitan Police.
- £49 million that will be spent on combatting knife crime, a two per cent police pay increase and boosting officer numbers.
- £55 million raised from business rates income so the Metropolitan Police do not have to borrow the amount previously planned for investing in police buildings and new technology.
- This will lead to a £3.3million annual saving in interest payments that will be spent on improving support for those taken in by the police with mental health problems.
- £5 million to be spent on recruiting additional police officers in the coming year.
From 2019-20, the Mayor will invest an additional £59 million annually raised predominantly from business rates income to support an extra 1,000 police officers than would otherwise be affordable by using income raised from business rates.
Since 2010-11, the Met’s general grant funding from the Government has fallen by more than £700 million, or nearly 40 per cent in real terms, on a like-for-like basis. In recent years, the Met Police have had to find roughly £600m of savings and the Mayor has found a further £150 million of savings since he took office.
This has led to the loss of a third of police staff posts, which are down from 14,330 to 9,985, as well as two-thirds of police community support officer (PSCO) posts, which are down from 4,607 to 1,591. In addition, there are now 114 fewer police station front counters and 120 fewer police buildings.
The Mayor has repeatedly warned that with further savings needed, the Met is running out of options and that police officer numbers in the capital could fall significantly below 30,000 before 2021 – a dangerous low which presents a serious risk to the safety of Londoners.
The Young Londoners Fund
Government cuts over the last eight years have hit young people hard. As a result, councils have been left with no choice but to slash more than £22 million from youth services since 2011, closing 30 youth centres, with at least 12,700 places for young people lost.
With the Government failing to support young people adequately, The Mayor is creating a brand new £45 million fund to help young Londoners – particularly those who are at risk of getting caught up in crime. The Young Londoners Fund will see £15 million invested in each of the next three years. £10 million a year will be used for a new fund into which local communities, charities and schools can bid for funding, and £5 million will be used to scale up existing City Hall projects in this area.
Other investments in the Mayor's Budget
In addition to these measures, which aim to boost the capital’s police force and make London safer, Sadiq has confirmed the following changes from his previous December draft Budget:
- A brand new £140 million investment fund to support projects that will grow the capital’s economy such as business space, transport infrastructure and schemes to bring new housing on stream. The funding is a result of London’s newly won ability to keep a greater share of the growth in business rates income that it generates.
- £6 million of funding to deliver permanent toilets for the capital’s bus drivers along 40 routes which currently only have limited access or opening hours.
- £6 million injection of further funding for protecting the environment and improving green space in the capital. The fund will deliver the roll-out of more new public water fountains - on top of the initial 20 the Mayor announced recently and create better local green spaces.
- An additional £11.6 million for councils to fund improvements to their streets and local neighbourhoods – taking the total amount of borough funding from TfL to an unprecedented £237 million in 2018-2019.
- A further £1 million boost to the keenly contested London Borough of Culture scheme.
- £1.3 million towards a homelessness mental health pilot, which aims to improve care and services for vulnerable and at-risk Londoners.