The Metropolitan Police should be given the power to recover all costs from policing football matches Labour London Assembly Member Andrew Dismore has said after new figures showed that the force spent almost two million pounds policing top-flight football matches in the capital last year.
Despite facing budget cuts of 20% the Metropolitan Police was forced to spend an estimated £1,917,030 providing policing services for football matches.
Whilst costs for police officers based inside stadiums and on their grounds can be charged to the clubs the wider police presence required outside the stadium has to be covered by the police alone. There is currently no legal right to recover the costs of these services from the clubs themselves.
With the Met facing significant further cuts in coming years Mr Dismore called for the Home Secretary to change the law to allow police forces to recover the full costs of policing top flight games from the clubs.
Labour London Assembly Member, Andrew Dismore AM said:
“With the Met facing deep cuts to their budgets and police officers facing the axe, it’s high time that clubs cover the full cost of policing their games.
“If top-flight clubs can afford to pay players hundreds of thousands of pounds a week, they can afford to cover the full cost of policing their games instead of expecting the tax payer to fork out millions to police money-making matches.
“This is one case where the goalposts do need to be moved and it’s down to the Home Secretary to level the playing field and make sure clubs are properly contributing to the cost of keeping their fans safe.”