Police Commissioner's plan to take on fire role

Julia Mulligan

6:53am 17th July 2017
(Updated 2:10pm 17th July 2017)

The police and fire services in North Yorkshire could be brought under one governing body, under proposals being put forward by the county's Police and Crime Commissioner.

Julia Mulligan has launched a consultation, after a new legal duty for emergency services to collaborate was passed by Parliament.

The move enables Police and Crime Commissioners to apply to oversee the fire and rescue service as well as the police, taking on the role of their local Fire and Rescue Authority.

Under the PCC's vision, collaboration between the two services would increase.

Ms Mulligan said: "I believe that there are some real opportunities to improve the service to the public, especially the most vulnerable, and at the same time save tax-payers' money and bolster and protect our frontline services.

"Let's be clear, this is not a merger.

"The two services will remain separate - police officers and fire officers will still have their own distinct roles, and budgets will always be kept separate.

"But by bringing both organisations under the same governance, we can improve things for everyone.

"Here in North Yorkshire, we have some good examples of working together where the police and fire services join up to prevent harm, helping to protect vulnerable people, and improve community safety.

"But just a few examples are not enough. There is much more that we could, and should, be doing.

"One way to do this would be by re-investing money into our frontline services that we will save by sharing governance and working better together.

"Saving money elsewhere is how I have been able to increase frontline numbers over the last few years, and this will be no different.

"For a start, I would explore the opportunities of a truly joint plan for sharing police and fire stations at more than 20 sites across the county where they are already close together, including our headquarters."

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