EXCL Andy Burnham hits out after Theresa May says ‘reasonable’ costs of Manchester terror attack will be covered
Andy Burnham has hit out at Theresa May after it emerged the Government may not reimburse Manchester for the full cost of dealing with the terror attack that took place in the city earlier this year.
In a letter to the Greater Manchester Mayor, the Prime Minister said “reasonable” costs would be covered - but stopped short of saying the city would receive all of the £17m it asked for.
Reacting to the letter, Mr Burnham said the offer "doesn't sound satisfactory to me".
He added: "We submitted this some time ago. I think we are entitled to a better response than this.
"We feel we've waited long enough and we need to see it resolved, and resolved quickly. Not just reasonable costs, but all costs that were incurred should be reimbursed."
A total of 22 people – including an eight-year-old and eight teenagers – were killed when a suicide bomber attacked an Ariana Grande concert at the Manchester Arena.
The subsequent police effort cost Greater Manchester Police around £9m, whilst the extra pressure on health and support services totalled around £8m.
It is also understood that the council is expecting to spend up to £10m more on coroner’s services, social care and administration connected to the attack.
Earlier this month the Prime Minister was pressed by Manchester Central MP Lucy Powell for a "clear and categoric commitment" that the money would "be reimbursed at the earliest opportunity".
But Mrs May stopped short of committing to the full amount, telling MPs she expected the "majority of funds will be made available will be made available” soon.
Greater Manchester Police have requested the cash through the government's special grants process, which can be used to cover “additional costs” that have been “incurred from policing unexpected and exceptional events.”
A Number 10 source said the Government has already signed off three-quarters of the £17m that has been asked for, and is considering the remainder of the request.
Responding to the news s Government spokesperson said: “We are absolutely committed to ensuring the victims of this terrible attack and Greater Manchester have all possible support.
“We have given strong assurance Manchester will receive £12m. That includes £3m being paid now and a further £1m being made available to support the We Love Manchester Emergency Fund.
“This is an ongoing process and the Government stands by its commitment to provide all necessary further assistance.”