City Hall votes against Newham fire engine cuts
- Credit: Archant
Firefighters await the mayor of London’s final decision after plans to keep pumps were backed by City Hall.
This morning’s vote sparked a fiery debate at the end of a consultation on how best to axe £11m from London Fire Brigade’s 2016/17 budget – with members in favour of alternate crewing by ten to six votes.
Andrew Dismore, London Assembly member for Barnet and Camden, tabled the motion. Speaking after the meeting, he said: “I am pleased that the authority as a whole has agreed the proposal we have developed.
“I hope that the mayor will look at this in a constructive way and accept what we are proposing, but somehow I doubt it.”
Against the mood of his crews, fire commissioner Ron Dobson has consistently recommended Option B. This would see 13 fire engines that have been out of use for two-and-a-half years taken permanently out of operation – two of which are in Plaistow and Stratford.
You may also want to watch:
Speaking in favour of Option B, Londonwide assembly member Gareth Bacon said the support of 70 per cent of the respondents for alternate crewing was “not a ringing endorsement”, adding that 99.98 per cent were “not moved to respond to the consultation at all”.
In a letter written by deputy mayor Sir Edward Lister, it was indicated that mayor Boris Johnson would likely to vote in favour of Option B “primarily on grounds of financial prudence”.
- 1 Cause of death remains unknown after body found in disused Forest Gate pub
- 2 Jailed man caught with knife in Stratford to be handed court order
- 3 Forest Gate triple shooting: 'Safety is everybody's business,' councillor says
- 4 Body found in derelict pub in Forest Gate
- 5 Road and rail disruptions to expect in east London this week
- 6 Tom Hiddleston to appear as MCM Comic Con returns to ExCeL London in Royal Docks
- 7 Hundreds arrested after police crackdown on county lines
- 8 Car abandoned after triple shooting and stabbing at Forest Gate barber
- 9 Worshippers at mosque in Upton Park aim to raise £35k for Royal British Legion's Poppy Appeal 2021
- 10 Thames Barrier closing for 200th time amid potential east London flooding
But Dismore said disregarding the views of 1,500 respondents was “putting up two fingers to the public”. He added: “The public has made their views known and we are ignoring them.”
Fire Brigades Union (FBU) official Gareth Beeton emphasised that the union did not support any kind of cuts, but believed Option A was the least damaging of the two possibilities. He said Newham had been “particularly hard hit” when the two pumps were taken temporarily out of operation.
The Mayor is expected to make his decision by March 17.