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Community safety cash cut by 60%

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Community safety funding is to be cut by almost 60% over the next two years it has been announced.

The Home Office has detailed funding arrangements for the second year of the spending period - two weeks after another department slipped out details of a much smaller, 20% cut for next year’s funding.

Community safety partnerships have now been informed that they will receive £28.8m in 2012-13, just 40% of the £71.2m provided this year and half the £56.8m promised for next year.

Community safety partnerships and police authorities have been waiting since December, when the provisional local government settlement was announced, to find out how much they would receive from central government.

Two weeks ago, funding for 2011-12 was included in the detail of the final local government settlement published by the Department for Communities & Local Government showing a 20% reduction and appeared to offer a reprieve to community safety partnerships who had been fearing a cut of 80%.

However, a letter from the Home Office sent last week to councils and police officers indicates that there will be a further 50% cut in the second year of the spending review period.

The letter also repeats an earlier missive from ministers that emphasised the importance of partnership working to “limit the impact of tightening public budgets” and informed community partnerships that police commissioners will control funds from May 2012.

Budgets in the last two years of the spending period are set to be “significantly larger”, the letter adds, because of the un-ringfencing of additional funding such as the Drug Interventions Programme grant.

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