London Fire Brigade budget 16/17 options
This Assembly notes Mayoral Direction 1516 – LFEPA 2016-17 Budget Options – instructing the Authority to ‘not redeploy’ thirteen fire engines, which are used to support the contingency arrangements during periods of industrial action.
This Assembly is deeply concerned that, despite repeated calls at LFEPA for the thirteen appliances to be returned, the Mayor has proceeded with this combative course of action; especially at the point at which LFB and the FBU were close to reaching an agreement on the terms of their return.
Furthermore, this Assembly regrets that the Mayor appears intent on the permanent removal of the 13 appliances, despite the fact that alternative budget options have not yet been formally considered by LFEPA, and while considerable work is being undertaken by officers and board members on finding alternatives to additional frontline cuts to meet the Mayor’s £11m reduction in the 2016/17 fire service budget.
This Assembly regards the Mayor’s Direction as unnecessary, and believes that it demonstrates that the Mayor is not committed to protecting frontline emergency services in the capital. Furthermore, the Assembly believes that the premise upon which the decision appears to have been made is not sufficiently strong to demonstrate that the safety of Londoners will not be jeopardised by his Decision; especially were that Decision the first step towards permanent removal of the thirteen appliances.
This Assembly calls on the Mayor to withdraw MD 1516 and to allow the re-introduction of the 13 appliances to London’s streets immediately, returning fire cover to the levels committed to within the fifth London Safety Plan (LSP5).