Removal of CAT funding “will be challenging”

Dalkeith Police Station, which the CAT team is  based out of

Dalkeith Police Station, which the CAT team is based out of

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Questions were raised at last week’s Police, Fire and Rescue Board meeting about how the community action team will fare when funding is removed.

The council-funded officers dedicated to Midlothian have seen funding cut in half in the past two financial years and funding will be completely removed next April.

After hearing about the community action team’s (CAT) latest achievements in the quarterly police report, Labour councillor Adam Montgomery asked how the cuts have hit performance.

He said: “In terms of community action teams how much effect are they having?

“The CAT teams are involved in quite a number of programmes that are in this report.

“It’s definitely going to be very difficult for you to sustain this.”

Chief Inspector Kenny Simpson responded: “For ourselves, the secret is ensuring that level of productivity remains. I think I’m pleased to say that the feedback from community teams has been welcomed.

“I’m not going to say that the removal of funded officers won’t have an impact, it certainly will.

“But I need to maximise what we have to continue that enhanced service in Midlothian.

“It will be challenging.”