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The Police and Crime Commissioner has secured nearly 3 million pounds in extra funding to tackle violent crime.
The money has been awarded by the Home Office and will be used to increase the number of police officer hours.
Because the cash is a one off payment it can’t be spent recruiting extra officers, but it can be used for overtime payments, short-term police staff contracts or individual projects and resources.
The force is pulling together a plan for how it intends to spend the extra £2,940,000. West Midlands Police has an overall budget of more than half a billion pounds which comes from central government and local council tax payers.
This isn’t the first time the Government has given forces extra money to tackle violence.
Last year nearly £5 million was handed to West Midlands Police by the Government. This paid for tens of thousands of extra policing hours to tackle serious violence.
To get round the fact the money can’t be used to recruit officers, because it is a single one-off payment, West Midlands Police used it to boost police overtime, to hire extra investigators to tackle robberies, to bring in police staff to ease the burden of paperwork on officers and to conduct a communications campaign which was designed to reach vulnerable young people.
The West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson, said: “Whilst this money amounts to less than half a per cent of the force’s annual budget, any money we secure is a bonus.
“The short term nature of this funding means we can’t increase recruitment in the way I would like, but it will help us put officers on the beat for more hours so they can tackle violent crime.
“The real solution to violent crime, however, is long term funding so we can carefully plan
Assistant Chief Constable Mark Payne said: “We welcome the Home Office funding announced today to help us tackle serious violent crime in our communities.
“We will be working with partners and other stakeholders to make the most of our combined skills in reducing violence in the long term as well as the short term.”
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