Members of West Midlands Fire and Rescue Authority (WMFRA), which governs West Midlands Fire Service (WMFS), have approved a major reform programme.
Today (10 April), members approved a plan that will lead to the streamlining of WMFRA and support a more collaborative delivery of services by WMFS with key partner agencies and stakeholders.
Last month, the WMCA Board unanimously approved a ‘route map’ for the future governance of WMFS under the soon-to-be-elected West Midlands Mayor.
At today’s WMFRA meeting, members unanimously accepted and approved a report setting out the direction, process and timeline for the changes. The changes will see the Authority reduce in size from 27 members to 15, plus four co-opted members reflective of existing and future collaborative partnerships.
WMFRA Chair, Councillor John Edwards, said: “We have carried out initial research through an independent working group and consultation with the public.
“This tells us that the critical services delivered by West Midlands Fire Service will be best achieved in collaboration with the Mayoral Combined Authority, which brings together all seven councils in the West Midlands.
“As well as our excellent fire and rescue services, we now also provide health and wellbeing services with our council partners. We want to develop these services more widely, to support people throughout the West Midlands who are vulnerable to serious incidents.
“The Fire Authority will now work with the elected Mayor and WMCA to develop a new approach to governance.
“A streamlined WMFRA will support the journey to the future Mayoral WMCA governance for WMFS. We want to achieve this change by the Autumn of next year.”
The full report can be read here: http://bit.ly/2nwhuIN