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Fire and rescue service to cost 3p a week more?

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CHESHIRE Fire Authority is seeking views on its proposal to increase its share of council tax by 1.99 per cent for the coming year..
The increase would see the precept levied by the authority on the average band D property in Warrington increase by £1.55 per year – approximately 3p per week – to £79.29.
This would be irrespective of increases levied by Warrington Borough Council or local parish councils.
It would enable the authority to continue to maintain fire prevention, protection and emergency response services across Cheshire in addition to costs such as inflation, fuel, equipment and other day-to-day running costs.
In addition, the authority also faces cost pressures associated with providing support to frontline services, such as improvements to the IT infrastructure and the repair and maintenance of fire hydrants.
Fire Authority chairman Cllr Bob Rudd said: “Over the past 12 months, Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service has really demonstrated how vital it is when responding to major incidents such as the Beechmere fire in Crewe, as well as all the prevention and protection work that the staff undertake.
“We should not underestimate the value of our firefighters and the fire service as a whole, and I hope that this year’s proposed increase – which equates to just an extra 13 pence a month – will be supported by the residents of Cheshire.”
Meanwhile the authority has undertaken a review of the whole service, which has identified proposals to improve how it prevents and protects communities from, and responds to, fire and other emergencies.
Subject to the outcome of the consultation on these proposals, which is currently underway, this will mean investing in better equipment and additional vehicles. Much of this investment is being met by realigning current budgets to prioritise essential expenditure.
This consultation on the authority’s 2020-21 budget will run until Monday February 3. . You can provide your views by completing the short survey below:
https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/CheshireFire2020Budget
Fire authority members will consider the results of this consultation at the meeting of the authority on Wednesday February 12.

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