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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 December 2006, 08:24 GMT
Funding urged for police college
Al Hutchinson
Al Hutchinson oversees the implementation of the Patten report
The government has been urged to provide funding for a new police college in Northern Ireland.

The appeal was made by Oversight Commissioner Al Hutchinson, who monitors changes to policing.

The 18th report from the office of the commissioner said the government should publish a timetable for completion of the college.

Mr Hutchinson also said the devolution of policing and justice powers should take place as soon as possible.

In a largely positive report, Mr Hutchinson said significant progress had been made in the past five years, with 86% of the Patten Commission recommendations "fully or substantially implemented".

The role of the commissioner is to ensure the recommendations of the commission, which produced a report on the future of policing in Northern Ireland, are carried out.

Mr Hutchinson is due to leave the role in May 2007, and urged the government to provide the funding before then.

The Patten Commission recommended that a new state-of-the-art academy should be built to replace the present college at Garnerville in east Belfast.

A site near Cookstown was picked, but the government has offered 40m less than the expected 150m cost.

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