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Views sought on proposed changes to fire service
10:20am Friday 4th October 2013 in Local
RESIDENTS will be able to have their say about proposals to cut the level of fire and emergency cover during a 12-week consultation.
Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service needs to save £4.7 million in three years and bosses gave their authorisation for views and local perspectives to be sought at a meeting yesterday.
A number of money-saving options have been drawn up by bosses including closing Bewdley's base or removing one of the two fire engines in Kidderminster.
A programme of consultation meetings with appropriate groups and interested parties have also been prepared, including with firefighters at those stations most affected, in addition to the wider general public consultation.
The questions have also been drawn together into a short booklet to aid consultation.
It is available at hwfire.org.uk/consultation to be filled in online or printed out.
Feedback will also be sought on the service’s social media sites where the hashtag #tellHWFire will be used.
Following the end of the consultation period on January 10, 2014, the results will be brought back to the fire authority for a decision on February 19.
Conservative Derek Prodger, chairman of the Hereford and Worcester Fire Authority, (FRA) said: “The fire authority is facing a very challenging financial position over the next few years and clearly recognises that difficult decisions have to be taken in the future regarding changes to fire cover.
“It is only right and proper that a full consultation with a wide a range of stakeholders takes place to seek views on these proposals, which have been drawn up to limit as much as possible the impact on frontline services.
“I am encouraging everyone in our two counties to read the draft CRMP and let us know their opinions.”
Meanwhile, The FRA deferred the decision for the service to progress discussions with Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service regarding future options for combination between the two Services.
The proposal will be considered by the authority at its next meeting in December when a further report will be presented.
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