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Published: 28 November 2023

Annual Report and Accounts 2022-23 published

Topic: Budget

The Scottish Police Authority has published its 2022-23 Annual Report and Accounts (ARA) which have received a clean bill of health from independent external auditors.

The accounts cover the reporting year to 31 March 2023 and confirm that policing managed its finances during 2022-23 within the budget set by the Authority.

The Scottish Government committed to provide a £40.5m uplift in core revenue funding, as well as an additional £6.6m of one-off funding to support the impact of COVID-19 and other specific funding of £2.8m. When combined, the total funding allowed the Authority to set a balanced revenue budget for 2022-23.

As part of the Spring Budget Revision (SBR) process, Scottish Government provided additional funding of £37.0m to support the 2022-23 pay deal for police officers and staff which was reflected as an in-year budget adjustment.

The Scottish Government also provided additional cash resources of £5.4m to meet the Authority’s working capital requirements in relation to the implementation of IFRS16.

The capital outturn for the year was £61.1m, with an underspend of £0.3m against the revised funding. Overall total capital expenditure was £3.0m higher than budget due to additional investment in fleet that was primarily funded by £2.8m of revenue reform funding transferred to Capital as part of the Spring Budget Revision process.

A total of £29.6m was originally made available by Scottish Government (£25m of revenue reform funding and £4.6m of capital reform funding). As part of the Spring Budget Revision (SBR) process, £2.8m of revenue funding was transferred to capital and £0.9m returned to the Scottish Government because of robust in-year forecasting processes.

The amount spent on policing during the year is detailed below:

• £1,238.6m Revenue - Police Scotland
• £40.6m Revenue - Forensic Services
• £ 4.7m Revenue - SPA Corporate
• £15.4m Revenue – Operation Unicorn
• £60.8m Capital across all policing
• £21.2m Reform across all policing

The Authority’s annual report includes an assessment of the performance of Police Scotland, Forensic Services and the Authority’s Corporate function. The performance assessment has been informed by the Authority’s oversight of policing, the views of local authorities, COSLA and the public’s views of policing.

Speaking about the Annual Report and Accounts, Martyn Evans, Chair of the Authority said:

“The 2022-23 Annual Report and Accounts explains what has been achieved during the year and concludes that operational performance was once again very good. Police Scotland continued to demonstrate their strength in service delivery in both large-scale efforts such as the policing of the funeral of HM Queen Elizabeth II, and in the day-to-day delivery of effective policing services to Scotland’s communities.

“The financial constraints being faced across the public sector are replicated across policing. A balanced budget has been set and achieved for the second year running thanks to robust financial management and controls.

“We continue to make the case for additional investment in our estate and technology to meet the needs of the modern, responsive, and effective public service that our workforce and communities deserve.”

Lynn Brown, Chief Executive and Accountable Officer for policing added:

“I am delighted that independent auditors have confirmed that the Annual Report and Accounts give a true and fair view of the state of our affairs for the 2022-23 year. I am grateful to the Board, Police Scotland and the Scottish Government for their support to achieve this. We remain committed to maintaining this position in the years ahead.”



The Authority’s Annual Report and Accounts detail how £1.4 billion of public funds has been spent to deliver policing and forensic services to communities across Scotland.

SPA’s Annual Report and Accounts 2022-23

The Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Act 2012 requires an annual review of policing to be produced each year. This is included in the Authority’s Annual Report and Accounts.

The Authority has primary responsibility for ensuring the proper financial stewardship of a budget in excess of £1.4 billion and is responsible for establishing effective arrangements for governance that enables the successful delivery of its objectives.