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Probation: Rural Areas

Volume 493: debated on Tuesday 2 June 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how the funding formula for probation services takes account of the costs of providing probation services in rural areas. (277056)

There are a number of factors taken into account to ensure that funding allocations are as fair as possible, including:

current financial performance and pressures;

detailed work by specifications benchmarking and costing programme to identify areas where efficiencies and savings can be achieved;

contrasting previous budget allocations with amalgamated indictable and summary convictions for the area. Adjustments have been made where data indicates significant (i.e. over 10 per cent.) relative over-provision compared to the norm; and

the need to avoid radical budget changes within any one area.