Page 19 - Hot News Oct 2016
P. 19

The Deputy Chief and I are part way through delivering Principal Officer Briefings on the 2017 - 2020 IRMP to operational staff alongside functional updates on the Deloitte and internal support services review to non-operational staff. The objective of the briefings is to give all staff as much clarity as we can over the future and to provide reassurance that we are committed to doing all we can to protect all aspects of our Service.
The operational response
proposals will, if implemented in
full, retain the support pumps at
Kirkdale and Southport crewed
wholetime 24/7 and deliver an additional wholetime days only pump at St Helens. This will allow us to maintain the existing response standard of 10 minutes to life risk incidents on 90% of occasions. We are also committed to creating as much opportunity as possible for our non-operational staff through the delivery of resilient and effective support service functions and are currently considering the best operating models available for ourselves and the Police on the basis of the options advanced by Deloitte.
At the same time we continue to lobby Government directly and through our MPs over affording the Authority the flexibility to increase the Council Tax precept by a one off £5. The impact of being able to do so could potentially save at least one additional wholetime pump and would result in a significant uplift to our base budget. We recognise what a difficult, challenging and uncertain time this is for all staff but we are confident that we can deliver an outcome which will be favourable to our Service whatever happens.
We are however acutely aware that we are still to deliver the structural changes assumed in the 2015/16 budget setting round through the mergers in Knowsley, Wirral and St Helens.
Work has now started at Prescot and the Planning Committee meeting on 15th December will determine if we will secure planning permission for
the proposed new station at Saughall Massie. Work is ongoing in St. Helens to determine the extent of remediation that will be required at the Canal Street site prior to the submission of a planning application. We shouldn’t underestimate the amount of work still to be undertaken to deliver the mergers. It is a very time consuming and protracted process which requires significant organisational commitment. At the same time we will be submitting planning applications for new LLAR accommodation at Formby and then Newton. My personal
thanks go to John McNeill, Colin Schofield and Stewart Woods amongst others for their efforts in this regard.
As ever there has been significant operational activity since the last edition of the Hot News.
A number of incidents are reported on in this edition. The Operational Assurance Team continue to analyse every incident to ensure that we learn lessons to improve how we respond in the future.
A joint Working Party will consider a number of the issues highlighted from recent incidents to identify how we can best maintain a safe and effective response while at the same time offering duty systems which are attractive to our staff.
To close I would like to express my sincere thanks to all of our staff and Cadets who attended Services of Remembrance across Merseyside and at the Cenotaph in London on 13th November. I had the privilege of laying the Fire and Rescue Service wreath at the Service of Remembrance at
St. Georges Hall in Liverpool and I was immensely proud of the Fire and Rescue Service detachment that turned out in such large numbers to march past and pay their respects. You are all a credit to the Service.
Dan Stephens
Chief Fire Officer

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