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Please find below additional information and answers to frequently asked questions about the fire governance review and business case upon which Norfolk’s PCC has launched a consultation. This list will continue to be updated to reflect the questions being asked by the public, partner agencies and key stakeholders.

Readers of the business case are asked to note the following: The map on page 66 of the business case is included for illustration purposes only; unfortunately the fire stations at West Walton and Hethersett have been omitted in error.

  • Is this a merger of police and fire?

    No. The two services would remain completely separate with separate budgets. There will be separate chief officers and distinct operational roles. However, a joined-up structure would mean the two separate services would work much more closely together, delivering better services more effectively.

    The Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) would become the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner (PFCC), overseeing the two services and becoming the Norfolk Fire & Rescue Authority.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Will firefighters be doing police work and vice versa?

    No. Firefighters will continue to be firefighters and police officers will continue to be police officers. Their roles will remain separate and distinct. The law states that full-time police officers cannot be firefighters.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Why can't police and fire just continue to collaborate?

    Whilst there are examples of some good work, the successes in terms of collaboration have too often been slow, patchy and complicated. As of spring this year, the operational police and fire joint collaboration board had not met for more than 12 months.

    Currently, we have a PCC holding the police to account, whilst the fire & rescue service is part of Norfolk County Council – meaning twice the governance. Two lots of governance frankly does not make sense, certainly not when it comes to quick and effective decision making. One of the real benefits of the role of PCC is that it is not hampered and delayed by a complex structure of committees, sub-committees and immovable meetings. PCCs can make informed, evidence-based decisions in a sharper, quicker and more effective manner.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Could the same level of efficiencies be made without a change of governance?

    In the business case, option 1 reflects our assessment of what could be achieved over the next ten years if there were no change in governance other than to strengthen current voluntary arrangements. This analysis takes account of the potential future benefit of continuing to develop co-location between fire and police and to look at more agile ways to respond to emergencies.

    Option 3, the option upon which the PCC is consulting, enables Norfolk to go further and faster with regard to developing operational and financial benefits by setting a common strategy for collaboration, making faster decisions around use of assets and resources and holding both chief officers to account to make sure that opportunities are fully explored and delivered.

    The business case calculates that option 1 should be able to deliver £5.3m of financial benefits in total over the next 10 years. However, under option 3 an additional £4.7m can be delivered over the same period. Added together, the total benefit under option 3 would therefore be £10m (£8.6m Net Present Value).

    A more detailed example of this approach is as follows: within the business case, option 1 takes account of existing plans by Norfolk County Council to realise savings in the fire & rescue service through the introduction of smaller and more adaptable emergency response vehicles at a small number of selected sites. Under option 3, this programme could be expanded under a joint fleet management arrangement. It would be used as a pilot project to explore more efficient and effective ways to respond to incidents such as road traffic collisions, drawing on the fact that firefighters and police officers will increasingly be deploying from the new co-located stations and with both control rooms working together more effectively under this option. In addition to the public safety benefits this could provide, there is also an increased financial benefit. In terms of fleet, the benefits of existing plans (i.e with no change of governance) total 2.6m (as shown in the table on page 41). Under option 3, that figure rises to £4.7m.

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • Would the identity of the two services be diluted by such a move?

    No. The two services would remain completely separate with separate budgets. There will be separate chief officers and distinct operational roles. Even with a change of governance, firefighters would remain firefighters and police officers would remain police officers. We are talking about two distinct services with distinct cultures, histories and traditions; both are rightfully proud to serve. That would not change and the two services would continue to retain their unique identities, roles and finances – one service’s savings would not fund the other, for example. But, by sharing oversight and making the lines of governance much simpler and clearer, both services would work better together and achieve and deliver much more for the people of Norfolk.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Why is this being looked at now?

    Last year, a new legal duty for the three main emergency services to collaborate was enacted by Parliament. The Policing and Crime Act 2017 provides PCCs with the opportunity to explore whether joint working between police and fire & rescue could be made simpler, faster and better. Options within the legislation include enabling PCCs to take on responsibility for the governance of local fire & rescue services where a local case is made.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Has this been done elsewhere?

    A number of PCCs have already explored the available options around fire & rescue governance. Essex has already had its local case approved and now has a Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner.

    Business cases for Staffordshire, Northamptonshire, West Mercia, Cambridgeshire and North Yorkshire have been approved by the Home Secretary and will see the creation of Police, Fire and Crime Commissioners.

    A number of other PCCs have either submitted their business cases to the Home Secretary or are exploring options for the future governance of their local fire & rescue services.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Who prepared the initial report and who was involved in the development of the business case?

    At the instruction of the PCC, and following a competitive tender process, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Norfolk (OPCCN) appointed professional advisors Grant Thornton to carry out an independent review and appraisal of the options which the Policing and Crime Act 2017 enabled.

    That project was split into two phases:

    • Phase 1– An options appraisal and the development of an outline business case.

    The options appraisal assessed the viability of exploring any of the options enabled by the Policing and Crime Act 2017 in greater detail in the form of a business case. The outline business case set out the findings of that assessment and provided a recommendation on a preferred option.

    The options appraisal developed by Grant Thornton in Phase 1 of the project was presented to the PCC in January 2018. The PCC then took the decision in February 2018 to proceed to Phase 2 of the project.

    • Phase 2– Development of a full business case.

    At the request of the PCC, a full business case was co-ordinated by the OPCCN, supported by professional advisors Grant Thornton.

    The information and analysis – both operational and financial – contained in the full business case was contributed to by a number of key partners, including senior representatives from Norfolk Fire & Rescue Service, Norfolk Constabulary and Norfolk County Council.  Sharing of views and development of ideas, in areas such as use of vehicles, took place through workshops which were attended by a mix of senior officers and operational staff.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • What is 'governance' and why does it matter?

    Governance is how an organisation is overseen and scrutinised and how decisions are made. This can include the setting of budgets, how money is spent, overseeing plans and performance, etc. Governance structures differ at different organisations, but often dictate how decisions are made and implemented, and the speed of the process. Effective governance leads to better spending decisions, policies, practices and procedures and, ultimately, a better quality of service, leadership and conduct. A good governance model should demonstrate transparency and enable the public to hold those in charge to account.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • How do things work at the moment?

    Currently, we have a PCC holding the police to account, whilst the fire & rescue service is part of Norfolk County Council – meaning twice the governance. Two lots of governance frankly does not make sense, certainly not when it comes to quick and effective decision making. One of the real benefits of the role of PCCs is that it is not hampered and delayed by a complex structure of committees, sub-committees and immovable meetings. PCCs can make informed, evidence-based decisions in a sharper, quicker and more effective manner.

    Norfolk County Council’s website explains the current arrangement as:

    Communities Committee

    The Communities Committee has responsibility for those services which are mainly based in Communities and serve all of Norfolk’s population. It includes those services which help build resilience in our communities and keep people safe. It focuses on how we engage with the public and how we make our services as customer friendly as possible. The specific functions are: Libraries, museums, archives, arts and events, Norfolk Records services, Adult education, Trading Standards, Public Health (including Drug and Alcohol Commissioning), Fire and Rescue, Emergency planning and community resilience, Customer Services, Community relations and engagement.

    (Correct as of 01.06.18)

    Community and Environmental Services

    Community and Environmental Services are responsible for a wide range of services which support residents, communities, businesses and visitors in Norfolk.

    Our services include things like libraries, museums, adult education, waste management, highway maintenance, trading standards, park and ride and public transport.

    We are also responsible for delivering projects like Better Broadband for Norfolk and the Norwich Northern Distributor Route.

    We also help to maintain safety in communities through the Fire and Rescue Service and Road Safety.

    (Correct as of 01.06.18)

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Why just police and fire?

    The Policing and Crime Act 2017 states that all emergency services (including the ambulance service) have a legal duty to collaborate. The Act also – and very specifically – gives PCCs powers to apply to take on the governance of the fire & rescue service. The same provision is not available for PCCs to apply to take on the governance of the ambulance service.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • What would this mean for me?

    Bringing the governance of police and fire & rescue services under a Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner (PFCC) would allow collaboration between our fire & rescue and police to go much further and at a faster pace. Bureaucracy would be cut, duplication of governance would be cut and efficiency would be improved. Efficiencies gained over time would be reinvested into the service. There would be greater transparency, greater dedicated focus and greater access for the public to hold their fire & rescue service to account. Under the proposed move of governance, Norfolk Fire & Rescue service will have its own budget that will be ring-fenced to fund fire & rescue services only.  The PCC believes that if we seriously want to bring about real change and achieve better outcomes for the people of Norfolk then we must do things differently.

    More information on the benefits can be found in the business case.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • What is a Fire and Rescue Authority?

    A Fire and Rescue Authority is a statutory body which oversees the policy and service delivery of a fire & rescue service.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Where does fire service funding currently come from and will that change under this proposal?

    Currently, the fire and rescue service is funded from within the overall Norfolk County Council budget. In simple terms, Norfolk County Council’s budget is funded from three general funding sources – government grants, business rates and the council tax precept.

    As part of the annual Local Government Finance Settlement, Norfolk County Council receives an allocation of Revenue Support Grant (RSG) and Baseline Funding (Business Rates) for fire & rescue. For 2019/20, these are £4.019m and £7.752m respectively. These amounts are, essentially, notional as they are not ring-fenced and it is a local Norfolk County Council decision as to how much is actually spent on fire & rescue services.

    The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) has published guidance on funding the transfer of a fire & rescue service from a county council to a Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner. The recommended method “which would be fair to county councils and to PCC-style FRAs (Fire and Rescue Authorities)” is “an individual transfer for each county council calculated as a proportion of the net revenue budget allocated to the fire and rescue service.” The business case sets out the calculation that the fire & rescue budget is 4.83% of the overall Norfolk County Council budget. Figure 22 on page 81 of the business case (reproduced below) calculates the relevant proportions of the funding streams using the CIPFA recommended methodology.

     2019/20 Norfolk County Council and Fire & Rescue Service general funding2019/20 funding allocation for Fire & Rescue Service based on Net Revenue Budget % of 4.83%2019/10 funding allocation remaining for Norfolk County Council
    Fire & Rescue Service Net Revenue Budget as a % of total Norfolk County Council Net Revenue Budget4.83%
    General funding sources£m£m£m
    Revenue Support Grant-38.810-1.873-36.937
    Business Rates-152.361-7.352-145.009
    Council tax income-396.569-19.137-377.432
    Rural Services Delivery Grant-3.195-0.154-3.041
    Total funding / Net Revenue Budget-590.935-28.516-562.419
    Fire & Rescue Service Net Revenue Budget-28.516

    These funding streams would go to the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner who would have the power to raise a dedicated council tax precept for the fire & rescue service.

    Further discussions with the county council will be necessary to finally agree the budget and funding to be transferred.

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • Are our funding streams more at risk under this proposal?

    All government funding streams are subject to change in the medium term. We have made reference to this in paragraph 6.3.9 on page 82 of the business case. The business case includes a high-level Medium Term Financial Plan (figure 23 on page 83). The funding sustainability and increase assumptions for business rates, Revenue Support Grant (RSG) and council tax are based on information provided to us by Norfolk County Council.

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • If fire & rescue separated from the County Council, would the service have the financial resilience to cope with extended fire cover in an emergency?

    In the event of exceptional operations and costs, there would be three ways of dealing with the situation:

    • Current spending could be re-prioritised. It may be possible to freeze budgets or defer other costs.
    • The Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner would have a General Reserve (negotiated as part of the financial separation from the County Council) from which exceptional (one-off) costs could be funded.
    • The Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner would be able to access ‘The Bellwin Scheme of Emergency Financial Assistance to Local Authorities’. 0.2% of the budget would have to be absorbed dealing with the particular incident/series of incidents before a claim could be made.

    There are presently around 22 standalone (combined) fire authorities which already manage their budgets as set out above.

    [Question added 8/8/2018]

  • Will the budgets for fire & rescue and police be combined?

    No. Because the organisations are not merging, they will still have their own separate budgets. By law, this must remain the case.

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • What would this mean for my Council Tax?

    Were the governance of the fire & rescue service to move to a Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner, the fire & rescue service element of the council tax would be consulted upon and set separately for the first time. This would make it clearer and easier for people to know exactly where their money is being spent in terms of fire & rescue. It would no longer be collected as part of Norfolk County Council element of your Council Tax bill.

    The police precept (police element of the council tax) would continue to be consulted upon and set by the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Would fire stations close?

    No. Fire stations would not close as a direct result of this business case. The PCC has made it clear, and the business case also highlights, that where fire & rescue and police stations are close to one another, there may be scope to combine them and house both services in one building. Where feasible, this would offer the benefit of saving money and facilitating closer working between the two services.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Why do West Walton and Hethersett not appear on the map in figure 19 on page 66?

    The map is in the business case for illustration only, and the omission of some stations is not an indication of decision to close stations – they should have been on there.

    There is no intention to close fire stations that could affect delivery of the current Integrated Risk Management Plan. The only exception might be where there is an opportunity to develop a new joint facility in the same location. No decisions have been made – each scheme would be subject to its own individual business case, to be overseen by the Chief Fire Officer and his team in order to align with the Integrated Risk Management Plan.

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • I have heard that fire stations like Heacham and Hingham will be closing under the draft business case. Is this true?

    The draft business case does not propose closing any fire stations. The PCC has said from the start and in numerous media interviews that no fire stations would close – this has not changed.

    [Question added 8/8/2018]

  • The business case doesn't propose closing any fire stations, but it does talk about co-location of police and fire. How would that work?

    The proposals in the business case are all about the potential to expand the existing programme of co-locating police and fire resources. We have the benefit on being able to draw on experience of co-locating at Sheringham and Downham Market and can be confident that taking this programme forward will deliver financial and operational benefits.

    This is about configuring services in the most efficient way; it is not about selling off assets so that money can be taken out of the fire service.  Indeed, any money from the sale of fire assets can only be reinvested in the fire service. Under the proposals, the co-location programme can be taken forward more quickly meaning that more can be achieved in a shorter timeframe and therefore more benefit can be delivered over 10 years than under the current arrangements.

    There are three key principles that will need to underpin any proposed co-location project:

    • Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service must be stationed where it needs to be to reach Norfolk communities, in line with the Integrated Risk Management Plan.
    • Firefighter and retained firefighter numbers must not be compromised by reducing capacity, or moving resources away from current locations.
    • Operational decisions, including the deployment of fire service resources, must ultimately be determined by the Chief Fire Officer and individual co-location projects will be subject to a detailed business case being made.

    It is important to adhere to these three principles, therefore the business case does not attempt to set out a predetermined list of sites where co-location will take place. This will be up to Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service to develop in discussion with Norfolk Constabulary. The Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner’s (PFCC) role will simply be to ensure that fire and police collaborate effectively and that investment decisions regarding the estates of both organisations are made quickly and efficiently, while still being subject to effective scrutiny.

    To develop the business case, it has been necessary to consider the full list of fire and police locations and the operational needs they embody. There are over 30 sites in Norfolk where there is potential for co-location or sharing of facilities in some form. Opportunities could range from a new purpose-built joint fire and police station through to a police desk attached to an existing fire station. In practice, and in accordance with the principles outlined above, most opportunities are expected to involve police sharing accommodation on existing Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service sites.

    In the business case, it is assumed that the development of 17 sites over the next 10 years should be feasible, representing approximately half of the potential co-location sites identified. This acknowledges that not all sites will prove to be suitable for development or cost effective and there needs to be flexibility over which ones are eventually selected. In order to place an estimated financial benefit on estates co-location in the business case, it has been necessary to look at the detailed and costed proposals at Attleborough, Reepham and Holt, and to draw on preliminary discussions between fire and police about a number of other potential sites. This information has then been used as a basis for estimating the total potential benefit that could be derived from 17 sites over 10 years.

    [Question added 20/8/2018]

  • Is it right that under the draft business case some stations would be 'downgraded' and have smaller fire engines?

    As part of the development of the draft business case a number of workshops and meetings were held in order to explore ideas for the future. Some of those involved staff from Norfolk Fire & Rescue Service and Norfolk Constabulary and looked at operational matters, such as whether the fire & rescue service’s response to incidents could be improved.

    One of the suggestions from the workshops and meetings was to run a pilot to see whether replacing some larger fire engines with more versatile 4×4 appliances could improve deployment and response in certain areas. The proposal aimed to offer a faster, more efficient response, especially in some (often more rural) areas where there can be problems in sustaining sufficient crew numbers.

    The PCC continues to receive and welcome feedback on this proposal and is listening to people’s views.

    [Question added 8/8/2018]

  • Is this just a move to save money?

    No. The primary aim of the case for change proposed by the PCC is to provide the best possible services for the people of Norfolk. Of course, money is a factor and any efficiency outlined in the business case will be reinvested in the service.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • The business case presents a figure of £10m of identified efficiencies over 10 years - how has that figure been reached?

    The business case actually identifies £11.5m of efficiencies at today’s prices, across the areas of estates, control room, fleet and support services. To achieve these savings, £1.5m of investment (cost) is required, making the net benefit £10m.

    However, HM Treasury additionally requires all financial appraisals to be calculated at Net Present Value and a discount factor of 3.5% per annum applied. That discount factor is a standard adjustment that is made to reduce the value of cash-flows over time, on the basis that money in the future will have less value than having that same money in your hands today. The Net Present Value of the £10m benefit generated by option 3, therefore, is £8.6m. The table below provides more information:

    Option 3Year 0Year 1Year 2Year 3Year 4Year 5Year 6Year 7Year 8Year 9Total
    Net benefits at Net Present Value1,1121,3257926395501,0897667408707068,588
    Summary2019/202020/212021/222022/232023/242024/252025/262026/272027/282028/29
    Benefits
    Joint Estates Strategy762766476219-36181801803852013,784
    Control Room02831211612022422422422421,483
    Joint Fleet Strategy9097753833833833833833833833834,748
    Support Services001841841841841841841841841,472
    Total benefits1,6711,5691,0469077251,3879899891,1941,0109,954
    Investments (costs)-559-198-198-198-94-94-48-48-48-48-1,533
    Net benefits1,1121,3718487096311,2939419411,1469629,954
    Net Present Value (i.e. after applying Treasury 3.5% discount rate)
    Total benefits1,6711,5169768186321,16880577790774110,011
    Investments (costs)-559-191-185-179-82-79-39-38-36-35-1,423

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • Would any savings from one service go to the other?

    No. By law the two services’ budgets and precepts (money raised through council tax) must remain separate. Given that the two services would remain distinct and separate, any savings would be invested back into the individual services.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • By how much will the fire service benefit?

    The benefits described in the business case will be available to the public at large and flow from greater efficiency, improved public safety and better value. Where the savings finally sit will depend upon individual business cases for change.

    Almost all of the benefit changes to the fleet will accrue to NFRS but estates opportunities may benefit either or both parties. Other savings relate to closer working in the control rooms and other support services, and again the benefit is expected to be shared.

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • What would this mean for staff terms and conditions?

    There would be no change to staff terms and conditions as a direct result of the business case. If there were to be a change of governance, staff would be consulted regarding the transfer of their contracts from the current Fire and Rescue Authority (Norfolk County Council) to the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner (PFCC).

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Can we have more explanation on how the PCC, as potential employer, can guarantee that fire & rescue personnel can remain on the Local Government Pension Scheme?

    Green book employees will remain within the Local Government Pension Scheme as governance by the PCC does not change the fact they will be employed within the local government sector. Contributions would remain the same; there would just be a different employing body paying the employer’s contribution. Firefighters will be employed by the Fire Authority/PFCC and will remain in the Firefighters’ Pension Scheme.

    [Question added 8/8/2018]

  • Will there be redundancies?

    There will be no redundancies as a direct result of the business case. The case for change is about who governs the fire & rescue service. As is always the case, any future plans either organisation might have would be subject to separate decision making and analysis and would require their own business case, including consultations with staff and representative bodies.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • If there is no intent to merge, then why are 'blended skillsets' mentioned (page 65 of the business case)? Why are control room staff being treated differently to firefighters? - the job in fire control is fundamentally different to that of a police controller.

    The business case acknowledges that control room jobs do differ. Therefore, it is agreed that an integrated control room is not practical under current operational conditions, partnership arrangements and the different roles that police and fire control room personnel have. However, it will also be important to make sure that the service does not stand still, and co-location will enable both control rooms to explore ways in which collaboration could develop.

    Blended skillsets might be an area worth exploring in the future and is mentioned in this spirit, but no decision has been made. The intention is that through co-location, both control room teams will have the opportunity to drive development themselves, based on what is practical and what might improve service to the public. An example might be mental health teams and negotiators, where deeper understanding of how to manage stand-off situations could be shared across both teams.

    [Question added 8/8/2018]

  • Much is said about our headquarters function now being at OCC, but the amount of accommodation available is considerably less than the fire & rescue service had at Whitegates. And there is still the contentious issue of car parking. How do you propose to accommodate personnel sufficiently?

    The move from Whitegates to the OCC was one that was agreed by the Fire & Rescue Service in conjunction with Norfolk County Council. It would not be appropriate to reply on behalf of the County Council in terms of the original decision on this or the future of Whitegates. The PCC did, however, authorise the use of the estate; this was following a recommendation put forward by the Chief Constable in partnership with the Chief Fire Officer. This is undertaken on the basis of encouraging closer working, with the PCC providing the office space free of charge to the value of £63,000 per annum.

    It has been raised by fire personnel that this has resulted in an erosion of the fire & rescue service brand and identity, being absorbed within the headquarters of the Constabulary. The PCC recognises the importance of brand and the differences in services. The governance model will provide the opportunity for the Chief Fire Officer to consider relocation on the site to provide that distinction.

    [Question added 8/8/2018]

  • When would a case be sent to the Home Secretary?

    Following a period of public consultation (scheduled to close in early September), the PCC will make a final decision on whether to put a case for change forward to the Home Secretary. If that were to be the case, it is likely that would happen in October 2018.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • What happens after that?

    It is likely an independent assessor will be appointed by the Home Office before the case is presented to the Home Secretary.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • What if the Home Secretary says yes?

    If the Home Secretary gave the go ahead, then secondary legalisation would be laid before Parliament for approval.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • What if the Home Secretary says no?

    It would be open for the PCC to consider other possible options, decide whether to amend the business case or whether more work is required on the case for change.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Will the PCC get a pay rise?

    PCC pay is fixed by Parliament and, currently, we are not aware of any plans to change the salary.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • Isn't the fire & rescue service better placed within Norfolk County Council where it is already joined up with key departments such as health and social care?

    The PCC has been clear that he believes the governance of fire & rescue sits better alongside the governance of a fellow emergency service, rather than alongside libraries, museums, archives, arts and events. He has stated that such a move would not adversely affect the positive and important working relationships the fire & rescue service enjoys with key departments at Norfolk County Council. The PCC has given the example of Norfolk Constabulary which manages to maintain such relationships perfectly successfully as a separate body, as do many other partners. In fact, the business case sets out that the proposed change in governance will speed up decision-making which is beneficial for working with partners to align strategies and create a more joined-up approach.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]

  • You're not saving that much money, so what is the point?

    The point is that, alongside what are significant efficiencies, realised through more efficient working and destined to be reinvested in frontline services, the benefits of the proposal reach far beyond being purely financial. The proposal is about aligning strategies and priorities to drive and keep a focus on joint working to make the most effective and efficient use of the resources available to deliver the best possible services for the people of Norfolk.

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • Does the PCC have the experience to govern the fire service?

    Much like the Chief Constable runs the police force, the Chief Fire Officer will be responsible for the operational running of the fire service. These proposals are about governance – providing a strong voice for our communities, holding the chief officers to account, ensuring the public get an effective, efficient service and making sure services meet and respond to community needs. This is a role the PCC already fulfils for policing and crime and would be expanding to cover the fire service as well in the best interest of public safety.

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • Communities have different relationships with their fire service than they do with the police. How would this impact on that?

    Firefighters will still be firefighters, and the police will still be the police. This change in governance would not directly affect those community relationships.

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • Who would hold the PCC to account if he were to take over governance of the fire service?

    The electorate would still hold the PCC to account as at present. Currently the work and decisions of the PCC are scrutinised by a Police and Crime Panel, made up of elected members of the county and district councils, as well as independent members. If this proposal were to go ahead, that Panel’s role and remit would be expanded to become the Police, Fire and Crime Panel.

    [Question added 18/7/2018]

  • Where can I find out more?

    You can find out more, and read the outline and full business cases, on our Fire Governance Review webpages.

    You can have you say by taking part in the consultation:

    • Take the online survey
    • Share your views by email to TellLorne@norfolk.pnn.police.uk
    • Give your feedback over the telephone by calling 01953 424455
    • Put your thoughts in writing and send by post to Fire Consultation, OPCCN, Building 8, Jubilee House, Falconers Chase, Wymondham, Norfolk, NR18 0WW.

    The consultation will end on 5 September 2018.

    You can read the Policing and Crime Act 2017 at http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2017/3/contents/enacted

    You can find out about the current governance arrangements for fire & rescue on the Norfolk County Council website.

    [Question added 11/7/2018]