Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

PM Must Correct Herself after She Got Sums Wrong

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

PM Must Correct Herself after She Got Sums Wrong

Article excerpt

Byline: JONATHAN WALKER Political Editor

PRIME Minister Theresa May has been urged to correct herself after the official statistics watchdog said she was wrong to claim Government funding for the police has risen.

Mrs May told the House of Commons that "more money is going to policing" and said: "We are providing extra funding for police forces."

Similar claims were also made by the Home Office, which stated on its official Twitter account: "The Government is providing a PS450m boost to #police funding".

But Sir David Norgrove, chair of the UK Statistics Authority, has ruled that the claims give the wrong impression.

The Police and Crime Commissioner for Northumbria Police, Dame Vera Baird, has now called on the Prime Minister to set the record straight.

We have said of the increase fundingr from council She said: "We have repeatedly had to listen to Theresa May state that the Government have provided an extra PS450m for police spending over the next financial year.

"Like the Labour front bench, I have challenged time and time against this claim - because spouting such rubbish is misleading and wrong."

The row focuses on Government funding for police services, which has actually been frozen - a real terms cut, once inflation is taken into account.

Government funding for Northumbria Police is PS222.6m for the financial year beginning in April, the same amount as last year.

But the Government has also made it easier for Police and Crime Commissioners to impose above-inflation increases in the police precept, which is added to council tax bills.

Dame Vera has imposed a PS12-a-year increase on band D homes. It means total funding for Northumbria Police will rise by PS5.1m. Labour politicians argue that this means the Government is wrong to suggest that it is providing extra money, because the increase will actually come from council tax-payers and not from central Government funding. …

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