Lancashire Police outlines £42m saving plans

The chief constable of Lancashire Constabulary has outlined his plans to save nearly £42m over four years.

The force which has an annual budget of £287m will axe about 550 officers and 250 civilian staff from its 6,000-strong workforce.

It said that at least 160 officers would be cut from the front line.

The plans also include a major review in the response to calls from the public and reduced neighbourhood policing.

Chief Constable Steve Finnigan said tough decisions were necessary and that he was "under no illusion that these reductions are painful".

Originally 1,000 jobs were at risk but a review has reduced the figure to 800.

Mr Finnigan said more than £38m worth of savings had been identified and he said he was confident that the force could find the additional £4m required to meet its target.

"We are being pretty tough in our decision making about how much we are taking from support functions, which gives us more flexibility to take less from the front line.

"Every aspect of the constabulary's business is under review, 62 separate projects have been identified, 56 have already been completed and the rest are either currently ongoing or planned for the next few months.

"Even though reducing crime will be a big ask as the impact of the cuts start to bite, I am clear that reducing crime is core business and will remain our focus," he said.

Malcolm Doherty, who chairs Lancashire Police Authority, said: "No-one wanted to be in this position, but once again hard work and commitment has delivered results."

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