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This article was reproduced with the kind permission
of the British Broadcasting Corporation

 

 

Thursday, 22 November 2007, 17:59 GMT
Fire service plans under review


Officials are to look again at alternatives to planned Cornwall fire service cuts following an inconclusive meeting with the Fire Minister.

Senior councillors, MPs and fire service union members met MP Parmjit Dhanda in an attempt to find a way around planned £1m budget cuts.

Cornwall County Council leader David Whalley said their request for government funds had been "spurned".

A spokesman for MP Parmjit Dhanda said he had listened to their concerns.

The county council says it needs to save £1m a year to help address an overall £15m budget shortfall.

Firefighters and unions have been campaigning against plans to end 24-hour cover at Camborne and Falmouth fire stations.


The Minister recognised the problems we have here in Cornwall and the lack of funding but despite this, he was not prepared to help
Leader of Cornwall County Council David Whalley

The council wrote to the Minister in September, requesting the opportunity to discuss funding issues. The talks were attended by council leader David Whalley, four Cornish MPs and chief fire officer Matt Littmoden.

Councillors told the MP Cornwall should get extra support because of its geography, demographics and the tourist industry.

Resolving differences

Mr Whalley said: "The Minister recognised the problems we have here in Cornwall and the lack of funding but despite this, he was not prepared to help.

"We are extremely disappointed; we have been spurned."

A spokesman for Parmjit Dhanda said it had been a "useful and productive meeting" and he was working with them to help resolve any differences

A review of the overall fire service is being carried out by the council following a fatal fire at the Penhallow Hotel in Newquay in August.

Executive Member for Public Protection Ken Yeo said: "Having given the Fire Minister the opportunity to address the inadequate funding, we now need to review the options within the limited budget in order to provide an adequate fire service for the people of Cornwall."