Today the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Communities and Local Government has announced the publication of a consultation on the future of fire and rescue control services in England. This follows the closure of the FiReControl project, announced in a statement to the House of 20 December 2010.
Responding to the latest announcement, the Chair of the Communities and Local Government Committee, Clive Betts MP, said
“I welcome this consultation, which should show the appropriate way forward following the collapse of the FiReControl project. I am grateful to the Secretary of State for keeping us informed about progress.
“The Minister’s statement makes clear that the fire and rescue community is best placed to decide the future of their control services. However, following the discontinuation of the FiReControl project, many Fire and Rescue Authorities may not have the money available that they will need if they are to ensure their existing local control rooms are fit for purpose.
“I would expect the Committee to continue to follow developments closely as the consultation proceeds. We are looking for reassurance that there will be enough funding to ensure that FRAs can invest enough to remain properly equipped to discharge their vital responsibilities to ensure our safety and security.
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Committee reports on FiReControl:
Fifth Report of Session 2009-10 (HC 352), FiReControl
Fourth Report of Session 2005-06 (HC 872), Fire and Rescue Service (see in particular chapter 3)