Page last updated at 16:28 GMT, Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Estimates: Police funding

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Home Office ministers should "think again" on police funding and ask for extra cash from the Treasury, senior Labour MP Keith Vaz has said.

During a Commons debate on police funding on 8 December 2010, Mr Vaz, the chair of the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee, said the Spending Review would result in a 25% fall in the Home Office budget.

Central government funding for the police was due to fall by 20%, but this would be offset by an increase in the precept charged on council tax, resulting in a total cut of around 14% by 2014-15, Mr Vaz said.

Mr Vaz said: "Of course there is the need for an overall reduction in the police budget. But where it hurts us as local MPs... is when it affects our local areas.

"What the public want is they want to be able to pick up a phone if a crime has been committed, to report it to a police officer and to make sure that crime is dealt with as quickly as possible."

He added: "A reduction in resources if it means fewer police officers - and I think it will mean that - then the government does need to think again and possibly go back to the Treasury and ask for additional resources so that we match the spending that there has been in the NHS and education."

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