HC Deb 06 June 1996 vol 278 cc702-3
2. Mr. Carrington

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what additional resources he is planning to give to the Metropolitan police in 1996–97. [30262]

The Secretary of State for the Home Department (Mr. Michael Howard)

I have approved a budget for 1996–97 that will allow the Metropolitan police to spend £29.2 million more this year than last—an increase of almost 2 per cent. and some 90 per cent. more in real terms than in 1979.

Mr. Carrington

Will my right hon. and learned Friend find time to visit Fulham and Hammersmith police stations, both of which have been rebuilt at a cost close to £10 million? Does that not show the Government's strong commitment to the Metropolitan police, whose 90 per cent. increase in spending in real terms is starting to pay off in the increasingly successful war against drugs, muggings, burglaries and auto crime?

Mr. Howard

I would like to visit my hon. Friend's constituency, and I shall do so when a suitable opportunity arises. My hon. Friend is absolutely right to be as pleased as I am with the performance of the police in the Fulham division, where there has been not only a fall in overall crime but a substantial increase in the clear-up rate, and a fall in auto crime—the theft of and from vehicles—on the most recent figures of no less than 20 per cent. year on year. I join my hon. Friend in congratulating the police in Fulham division on their excellent performance in fighting crime.

Mr. Tony Banks

What additional support and resources are being made available to the Metropolitan police in connection with Euro 96? Our police, unfortunately, have acquired the best expertise in dealing with hooliganism and one wants to see them given all necessary support. Have any additional resources been requested, and what steps has the Home Secretary taken to make sure that the police have adequate support?

Mr. Howard

Again, as so often happens, we see Labour Back Bencher after Labour Back Bencher getting up to ask for more money to be spent. We have made generous provision for the Metropolitan police, and out of it they are making available resources to deal with Euro 96—as are other forces throughout the country. Only the antediluvian Opposition Back Benchers think that more money is the answer to everything.

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