G20 Summit Means Cambridgeshire Police Overtime Budget Is In the Red
POLICE in Cambridgeshire are enjoying a bumper crop of overtime –- including helping out at the G20 summit- and in the first five first months of the financial year were �207,000 over budget. The figures were released by John Hummersone, treasurer to Camb
POLICE in Cambridgeshire are enjoying a bumper crop of overtime -- including helping out at the G20 summit- and in the first five first months of the financial year were �207,000 over budget.
The figures were released by John Hummersone, treasurer to Cambridgeshire Police Authority, who said over half that sum would be reclaimed from other police authorities.
A police authority spokesman said today: (Friday) "The over spend is a nominal amount when you consider our overall budget (�126million) and that we have one of the lowest number of officers per head of population in the country.
"Yet our officers are among the most productive, given the pressures of policing a rapidly growing population with scarce resources."
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Cambs police has a �3 million budget for police officer overtime and by the end of August had spent �1.1 million, �207,000 over forecast. By the end of the financial year the figure is expected to rise to �420,000 over budget.
Mr Hummersone, however, says the figures to date include �109,000 "in respect of rechargeable operations which reduces the overspend to �97,000 demonstrating continued budgetary control across the organisation".
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Cambs police spent �43,000 on overtime dispatching officers to help with special operations outside of Cambridgeshire and this, along with the �33,000 spent on the G20 summit, will all be reclaimed.
Sums such as the �7,500 spent on overtime payments for policing the Cambridge Strawberry Fair and a further �6,900 on overtime for the Midsummer Fair, will also be reclaimed.
Within Cambridgeshire Mr Hummersone says spending on police staff overtime is also �92,000 ahead of budget, mainly because of work spent on safer communities, investigations and ICT.
But Mr Hummersone is comfortable overall with police spending, telling members of the police authority that the overall budget is broadly in balance with only a marginal overall overspend of �40,000.
With overtime over spent, the treasurer reported that police officer pay and allowances was under spent by �240,000 because leavers have generated savings which exceed the costs of the 31 recruits who joined on July 31.
"The under spend is expected to reverse following further recruitment rounds and this aspect of the budget is forecast to break even at the year end," he said.
However he told members that spending on interpreters is running ahead of budget and is predicting a �231,000 over spend by the end of the year.
Interpreters' costs will form part of a special report by the authority's finance board fort consideration next month.
The authority spokesman added: "Productivity analysis for 2007/08 showed that Cambridgeshire officers arrested the most people per officer in their Most Similar Group.
"Cambridgeshire officers conducted the highest number of stop searches per officer in its Most Similar Group.
"Cambridgeshire had the highest number of drug seizures in its Most Similar Group, and was 3rd nationally in drug seizures per officer.