'The Mayor has the power to decide, it's his budget,' say LibDems
BORIS JOHNSON is to cut Metropolitan Police numbers by nearly 500 officers in the next three years.
While as a proportion that amounts to only about 1.5% of the total Met force, the cuts will be seen as going against the spirit of BoJo's election-for-Mayor campaign, during which the Tory candidate put much emphasis on fighting crime.
"We need to redirect more resources to frontline policing," is one typical quote from Johnson's manifesto.
But that was 2008 and two years later in his budget report, Johnson says that , "over the three years to 2012-13, the number of police officers is forecast to decrease by 455."
In an apparent attempt to pin the blame for the cuts on central government, Johnson cites problems with "future funding levels", but his opponents don't agree.
"The Mayor has the power to decide, it's his budget," Dee Doocey, a Liberal Democrat member of the Metropolitan Police Authority, told The Guardian.
"The money for policing from the home office has increased for policing."
It's the second time in a week that Johnson has fielded flak over the Met. Last time, it was his resignation as chair of the MPA.