Press release

22 December 2014

The chairman of the West Midlands Fire Authority says that annual funding will be £400,000 less than they were led to believe by the government. 

Councillor John Edwards said that the service has lost 27 per cent of funding over four years, equivalent to £22million.

The authority is currently recruiting 50 firefighters but claim that these will only replace retirees. The number of fire engines has decreased from 61 to 41 with brigade response vehicles making up the difference.

The Wolverhampton Express and Star reports that the Local Government Association said that the cut in central government grants amounted to 8.8% and warned that town halls will be forced to consider cutting services as they slice an estimated £2.6 billion off their budgets for 2015/16.

The newspaper also says that the Chartered Institute for Public Finance and Accountancy put the reduction in central grants at 14.6% and said the actual reduction in average spending power was 6%, with some councils facing cuts in their budgets of almost 11%.

Original source
Express & Star

Commercial buildings, non-domestic and multi-occupancy premises in England and Wales are already forced to undertake a 'suitable and sufficient' fire risk assessment carried out under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

While the overwhelming majority of premises do this, if the assessment is thought to have been carried out to an insufficient extent, the Responsible Person can face an unlimited fine or up to two years in prison.