The coalition government has agreed to guarantee an additional £199.5m for the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) to enhance its ability to protect the people of Northern Ireland and to tackle the terrorist threat. This follows a formal request from the Justice Minister David Ford and the Chief Constable of the PSNI. In addition the Northern Ireland executive has made available an extra £45m for security.
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, the Rt Hon Owen Paterson MP, said:
The coalition government has always made clear that we will protect the people of this country with all the means at our disposal. We are therefore honouring the agreement reached on the devolution of policing and justice and going beyond it by agreeing to guarantee an additional £199.5m over the next 4 years for the PSNI to help protect the community and tackle the terrorist threat. We are doing this despite the unprecedented pressures on the public finances.
It demonstrates the commitment of the government and the Northern Ireland executive to work together to reduce the threat from those who mistakenly believe they can pursue their aims by violence and by dragging Northern Ireland back to the past. I am particularly pleased that it will provide the PSNI with the certainty they need to enable them to plan ahead for the next 4 years. This government has always promised to stand by Northern Ireland and, by agreeing to this exceptional 4 year funding package, once more we have done so.
Notes for editors
Funding for the PSNI is primarily for the Department of Justice in the Northern Ireland Executive. The agreement reached on the devolution of policing and justice to the NI Assembly was that access to the Treasury Reserve would be possible to meet exceptional pressures arising from the security situation.
£50.3m was made available under this agreement in 2010/11, and the government has now, exceptionally, agreed to guarantee an additional £199.5m for the PSNI over the 4 year Budget 2010 period. £57.1m will be underwritten in 2011-12, £53.3m in 2012-13, £62.4m in 2013-14 and £26.7m in 2014-15. The NI executive is also making available an additional £45m over the same period. The package will enhance the PSNI’s ability proactively to tackle the terrorist threat and to protect the people of Northern Ireland.