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Met to receive almost £30m from council tax hike to fund 500 PCSOs

The Mayor of London is to increase the precept for an average Band D property by £38.55 a year, with £15 of this specifically earmarked for policing from April onwards.

The Met Police will be given the funding to bolster its PCSO numbers by almost 50% as part of a planned council tax increase to be announced by Sadiq Khan. 

Publishing his draft budget for the Greater London Authority Group, the Mayor of London confirmed that £15 of the overall increase is to go towards policing.

The additional £29.3 million will be given to the Met to fund the recruitment of 500 PSCOs, a move which Mr Khan said "will help us to build on the progress we’re making to reduce violent crime in London".

Met Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley indicated that he would like to "rebuild our PCSOs" during an appearance in front of the London Assembly last October, while Unison has repeatedly called for 8,000 to be recruited as replacements for those cut.

As of March 31 last year, there were 8,750 PCSOs across the 43 forces - down 5.8% on the 9,284 recorded in 2021. 

There are currently around 1,000 such officers serving in the Met, which has welcomed the boost in personnel.

Assistant Commissioner Louise Rolfe said: "Community policing is the Met's foundation and we will do everything we can to make our service to communities as strong as possible, through visible policing in neighbourhoods with police officers and PCSOs - who know what matters to local people - by reducing local crime, and building strong, trusted, local partnerships to fix local problems."

Mr Khan added: "This is a challenging time for our city, with a Government that is not fully funding our public services, but I’m determined to step up so that we can continue building a greener, safer and fairer London for everyone.”

Twenty pounds of the overall council tax increase will go toward plugging TfL's budget gap, while the London Fire Bridge will receive an additional £3.55.

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