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Lichfield’s MP has welcomed news that the Police and Crime Commissioner will take control of Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service.
The Home Office has confirmed the decision, saying it would bring the same “directly accountable leadership” to another of the emergency services.
Conservative MP Michael Fabricant has been vocal in his calls for the change to be introduced – and said it would bring an end to “docile” management of the fire service.
“I am delighted and relieved that the Home Office have announced their decision to bring the Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service under the control of the Police and Crime Commissioner,” he said “This is very good news for the people of Staffordshire and firefighters based at fire stations who have seen their capabilities eroded.
“I have been increasingly more alarmed over the past few years with some of the decisions made by the senior management of the Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service which were then rubber stamped by uncritical and, at best, docile members of the Fire Authority.
“These included a decision to establish a multimillion pound fire prevention ‘theme park’ in Stafford which my constituents would be unlikely to ever visit and then was subsequently rejected after pressure from MPs, and the refurbishment of the fire station in Lichfield costing hundreds of thousands of pounds but with fewer fire fighting vehicles.”
Mr Fabricant said the move would also allow the fire service to make savings without impacting on public safety.
“These changes will result in millions of pounds worth of annual savings in back-office administration functions which can now be redirected into frontline fire fighting services.
“This is excellent news for Staffordshire.”