PCSO posts are safeguarded in first budget from police chief

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Beds Police and Crime Commissioner Olly Martins’ first budget includes steps to safeguard PCSOs.

The £102.878m budget for 2013-14 has now been backed by the Police and Crime Panel.

That support, and their approval of his police and crime plan, means he can start to put his proposals into practice.

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They include safeguarding the county’s police community support officer posts, 40 per cent of which had been at risk.

Mr Martins said: “I know how much the public values the work they do and I have seen first-hand how well they do their job. It was one of my key pledges to do all I could to protect visible policing so I am very pleased to have been able to protect all 108 PCSO posts.”

Funding cuts had meant “difficult decisions” such as increasing the amount the public pays towards policing by two per cent. That will bring in an extra income of £560,000 for the force in 2013-14.

Beds Police face a funding gap of about £7m over the next three years due to cuts in the main policing grant from the government.