Chief Constable Sue Fish said: “The HMIC report into Nottinghamshire Police’s efficiency recognises that the Force has a firm understanding of current demand and of demand in the future.
“We also welcome findings which show that we have been, and continue to be, successful in streamlining our processes and removing inefficient ways of working in order to meet the strain of a reduction in funding to the Force.
“When looking at the report we have to take into account the fact that Nottinghamshire Police is funded differently to some forces. We receive 72 per cent of funding from central government while the national average is 67 per cent. This means that when cuts are made, it can have a deeper effect here than in some other forces. The impact of this is that budget reductions between 2012/2013 and 2016/2017 are double that of the average police force.
“We accept that our financial management in 2015 was not good enough and we recognised there were budget errors. The budget had been miscalculated which resulted in us having to make financial savings this year which should have been made in the previous year. The issue was reported properly at the time to the Police and Crime Commissioner, the Police and Crime Panel, and to HMIC.
“We also used capital reserves in the last financial year. This was to ensure that we could maintain a high level of service to the public and we have already begun to replenish those.
“Following this we recruited an experienced senior finance manager and accelerated our change programme to catch up with where we should have been. We are now on track to deliver extremely challenging efficiency targets.
“Our accounts have now been successfully audited with the external audit certification being received in September 2016.
“The work we have done means we can now recruit and make sure that police officers are recruited with the skills to meet new challenges the Force will face in the future so that the people of Nottinghamshire receive the best possible service.
“We have worked tirelessly to try and remove as much cost from the organisation without reducing staff and police officers because we know that this is what the public values.
“In addition, and in conjunction with other East Midlands forces, we have also introduced innovative ways of joining up technology and linking systems which allows additional collaboration and sharing of information.
“Providing a high standard of service to people who need our help is our priority and we have maintained the highest rates of customer satisfaction in our region with 83 per cent of people reporting a positive experience.”
Paddy Tipping, Nottinghamshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “I have read the report and discussed it with the Chief Constable. It’s fair to say that we recognised the issues that have been raised in the report, and we took direct action to address them, including the appointment of a senior finance manager which has helped the force to address the problems it faced. As a result things have improved significantly and we have firm plans in place for the future.”
A copy of the report can be found HERE
Posted on Thursday 3rd November 2016