Government funding for the MPS (Supplementary) [1]

Session date: 
December 14, 2011
Question By: 
Kit Malthouse
GLA Conservatives
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


Mr Mayor, would you agree that when comparing police numbers over a period, it is helpful if you compare like with like, and that therefore when Assembly Member McCartney is comparing the number in 2008 with the number we have now, she has to take into account the change in the training regime. The number in 2008 will have included up to 1,000 trainees who were in the classroom at Hendon rather than out on the street, and that in the intervening year, we have had a change in the training model, which means we no longer have those trainees sitting in classrooms in the way we did before. We had them represented in the over 5,000 special constables in our patrol on the streets, many of them preparing to become full officers, and that if you actually compare like with like, your achievement in raising police numbers is significantly above 1,000 and is looking more like 3,000.


Answer for Government funding for the MPS (Supplementary) [1]

Answer for Government funding for the MPS (Supplementary) [1]

Answered By: 
The Mayor

I think it is a good point, and of course it is your achievement, Kit, and I would say that it is partly Joanne's too, because you have been sitting there in the MPA doing some of this work, and I think, putting party politics aside, everybody is working to keep police numbers high in London and we are coming to the end, I hope, of negotiation that will enable us not just to have that success and not just to continue the success we have had, but to protract that on beyond 2012.

Kit Malthouse AM (Chair, Metropolitan Police Authority): Would you also agree that while questions about the budget are obviously a legitimate area of business for this Assembly, it is a little dispiriting to see a repetition of exactly the same questions as last year when we were also presented with a budget gap, which we successfully closed and therefore maintained capacity, and that there seems to be a lack of acceptance in certain quarters in the Assembly, that the way local authority business is done - and they should know, those who have been councillors - is that you start with a budget gap and you work on it and you attempt to close it, and that is what we have done over the last three years.

The other bit of the equation which is yet to form up, which you have obviously had a drive across the GLA, is the savings programme, which is still in its infancy as far as many organisations in London are concerned and offers potential to meet at least the income growth halfway.

Boris Johnson (Mayor of London): I completely accept that, and I congratulate you, Kit, on all the work that you have done to make that, I sincerely do. I would just say that if for some reason roles were reversed and Joanne was sitting where you are sitting, she would now be saying exactly that, and the fact is and I think she knows that - I think that people have worked very hard to keep police numbers high in tough circumstances and we are determined to continue to do so.

Jennette Arnold (Chair): OK, thank you. Can I thank Assembly Member Boff for withdrawing his question on council housing finance, because he has received the answers in previous responses from you, Mr Mayor. We now go to a question from Assembly Member Cleverly; that is 4124 on Operation Hawk.