Lichfield and Burntwood’s MP says he is delighted taxpayers’ money will not be wasted on a challenge to plans to give the Police and Crime Commissioner control of Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service.
The Home Office had given the proposal for a change in governance the green light last month.
Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Ellis insisted firefighters “should not be unduly worried” by the plans, which would see the current Stafforshire Fire Authority abolished.
Conservative MP Michael Fabricant – who has supported the decision to bring the fire service under the remit of the Police and Crime Commissioner – said he was pleased a costly challenge to the proposals had not been pursued.
“I am relieved that the fire authority has decided not to waste even more taxpayers’ money by challenging the Home Secretary’s decision to merge the governance of the police and fire services,” he said. “They had been planning to call a judicial review into the decision which would have been very costly.
“I have been disappointed with the Staffordshire Fire Authority over the years, from their management of fire stations to their aborted plans for a multi-million pound fire prevention ‘theme park’ in Stafford.
“A monument to their incompetence has been the construction of a brand new fire station in Lichfield with fewer firefighting appliances.
“I hope that under the guidance of Matthew Ellis, the Staffordshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Staffordshire’s Fire Service will enjoy a renaissance.”
Mr Fabricant had raised the issue of what he believes could be £10million saving from the merger in a House of Commons debate today (April 16).
Home Secretary Amber Rudd replied: “I am grateful that it has been able to go through, and that the local authorities have accepted the independent advice we have received.
“I hope Matthew Ellis, and all the other organisations involved, will make a great success of it.”