16 March, 2018

MP and Commissioner team up to press Government for fracking funding

Kevin Hollinrake, MP for Thirsk and Malton, and Julia Mulligan, elected Police and Crime Commissioner for North Yorkshire, this week met with policing minister, Nick Hurd, to seek support from the government towards the cost of policing the fracking protests in Kirby Misperton.

The additional cost to North Yorkshire Police has so far topped £700,000.

And while Third Energy’s operation in Ryedale is currently on hold, it is likely that hydraulic fracturing will resume, and when it does the policing costs will rise once again. The Minister responded positively to the case put forward by the pair, and set out the process for putting forward an application for support.

Julia said: “I’d like to thank the Minister for such a positive meeting and as agreed, will be working with officials to put together our application for a financial contribution.

“In the meantime, I will be writing to the Chief Constable with the concerns of local residents, who have presented me with an 80-strong petition. Whilst the fracking itself is now on hold, I am keen that the police fully understand the impact on the community, to learn lessons for any future operation.

“I’d also like to thank the officers who have policed the site and their colleagues who have filled in across other parts of the force, especially as it has been far from easy at times. Elsewhere in North Yorkshire, the public too have been very understanding as Operation Kingfisher has undoubtedly impacted on some aspects of the service they have received.”

Kevin said: “Hundreds of thousands of pounds have been spent quelling aggressive protests and local resources have been stretched as a result. The Minister confirmed that a special grant is available and that, so long as criteria are met, our bid is likely to qualify.

“After the Police and Crime Commissioner’s team have calculated the total cost, they will be submitting an application to the Government for a reimbursement of funds. I will do everything that I can to help make sure that this is successful.”

The policing operation in Kirby Misperton will remain a standing item on the Public Accountability Meeting agenda until further notice, which can be viewed live or following the meeting.

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