AN extra £1 billion of government funding for police has been welcomed by Dudley's MPs.

The West Midlands is set receive £50 million of the government's national police funding increase, which will see funding rise by 10% for 2020/2021.

The announcement was welcomed by Dudley North MP Marco Longhi, who said the money will help constituents who have been plagued by anti-social behaviour and burglaries.

Mr Longhi said: “The Home Secretary has announced the biggest increase in funding for the police in a decade. This will result in a boost of over £50M for the West Midlands. I am delighted by this and I know the first wave of new police officers are already being recruited.

“Feedback I received from recent local forums, such as the recent one for St Thomas, Castle & Priory and St James show that car theft, burglaries and some anti-social behaviour are top priority concerns for local people. This shows what an appalling decision it was for the current Police and Crime Commissioner to spend £33M on his office refurbishment, so targeting these new government resources, as well as our existing ones, at these areas is a top priority for me.”

The move was also welcomed by Mike Wood, MP for Dudley South, who called on the Police and Crime Commissioner to tackle crime in "every part" of the region.

Mr Wood said: "Boris Johnson promised that he would make policing a priority, recruiting 20,000 more police officers over the next three years. This billion pound package is a fantastic first step towards delivering that, making our streets and our homes safer.

“It means £50million more for West Midlands Police next year – a 9 per cent increase on this year’s budget. My constituents and businesses in Dudley South will rightly expect the Police & Crime Commissioner to use this to reflect their priorities and tackle crime in every part of the West Midlands.”

The news was cautiously welcomed by David Jameison, Police and Crime Commissioner for the West Midlands, who said "chronic funding problems" still exist despite the boost.

Mr Jamieson said the money for 1,200 new officers in the West Midlands does not address the 2,100 officers that have been lost over the past decade.

He said: "At last the government have recognised the damage they have done with ten years of cuts to policing. This must be the first step in addressing the chronic funding problems that still exist.

“I am pleased that after years of campaigning we have had some success in changing the government’s direction. There is much more for them to do though.

“Since 2010 West Midlands Police have lost over 2,100 officers and faced real terms cuts of £175 million in government funding. Today’s announcement does not come close to unravelling a decade of underinvestment in police forces.

“Out of the government’s planned 20,000 uplift in officer numbers – based on today’s figures - West Midlands Police can expect around 1,200 officers, despite having lost nearly double that number.

“It should also be noted that whilst good quality policing is crucial to reducing crime, other services have a big role to play to. We need to see an increase in youth services if the government are serious about tackling the root causes of crime too."