End of freeze on police jobs?

A police recruitment freeze in Derbyshire could come to an end in 2012 – three years earlier than planned.

The Police Authority has already secured £15m of the £19m it needs to plug the funding gap following a 20 per cent reduction in its Government grant until 2015.

Through efficiency savings and prudent spending, the Authority can now draw more than £1m from its budget reserves to invest in more bobbies.

Philip Hickson, chairman of Derbyshire Police Authority, said: “We’ve made some difficult choices over the past two years.

“Those decisions are thankfully now justified in light of the huge progress we’ve made in our budget plans and the healthier financial position we find ourselves in.”

The Authority made contingency plans to address the likely financial hardship it would face, identifying £6m of savings even before the Government announced the cut in grant.

This resulted in the loss of 250 staff posts and a freeze on all recruitment for officers and staff from July 2010.