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Toilet Paper Claims - Budget Cuts - Not Accurate

Minister of Police Hon George Hawkins said claims that toilet paper shortages have occurred because of Police budget cuts is totally false.

"Yesterday I asked the Commissioner of Police to ascertain the veracity of claims that cost savings were impacting on the Police. This morning the Police reported to me that such claims were exaggerated and inaccurate, and in my view grossly misleading and mischievous.

"References to toilet paper shortages are wrong. This claim has been refuted by the station sergeant. He says, one historical event occurred after the station failed to order new supply. It had nothing to do with budgets or finances.

"Comments that Police were having to supply their own pens are also spurious.

"Claims that a Police station was not able to afford to prune its hedges also are completely incorrect. Police tell me that a constable did do some gardening but that it was at his own request, once only, and for one hour. The constable's reporting of this was, in the Police's view, irresponsible and highly provocative," George Hawkins said.

"Such inaccurate claims are a frustration, particularly as they deter the public's view of Police away from the excellent work that this organisation does.

"For example, the Police's new Highway Patrol is another example of excellent Police work that is designed to actually save lives.

"The Highway Patrol seems to be under seige by National's Brian Neeson.

"Neeson must be reminded that the Highway Patrol project will create a safer country for millions of New Zealanders.

"Neeson's party's legacy to New Zealand's Police was the INCIS fiasco that cost Police over one hundred million dollars, and a Review that sapped the Police of dignity and morale," George Hawkins said.

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