Peterborough and Cambridgeshire residents set for three per cent fire service council tax rise to '˜maintain current service'

Residents in Peterborough and Cambridgeshire are set to pay an extra three per cent a year for the fire service's proportion of council tax.

Monday, 7th January 2019, 2:56 pm
Updated Thursday, 10th January 2019, 2:40 pm

The proposal by the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Fire Authority for 2019/20 would equate to an extra £1.98 a year for a Band D property.

The Fire Authority said the rise would allow it to maintain its current service but does not allow for any growth.

The authority is currently challenging the Home Office’s decision to transfer governance of Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service from itself to police and crime commissioner Jason Ablewhite.

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A judicial review is to be held at a date yet to be confirmed.

Chairman of the fire authority Kevin Reynolds said: “We do everything we can to keep the precept we set as low as possible and this is demonstrated by the fact we are one of the lowest cost fire and rescue services in the country.

“We have been assessed in our recent government inspection as ‘good’ for how efficient and effective we are as a service and we have a strong track record of identifying ways in which we can be more cost effective to either plug funding gaps or reinvest back into the service to help us continue to improve.

“But despite this, we are having to ask for an extra £1.98 a year for a Band D property this year to enable us to maintain our current level of service. Protecting the frontline is vitally important to us and it becomes more challenging each year with additional financial pressures, but a small increase in council tax will allow us to do this.”

Increasing the amount of council tax for the fire service by three per cent will mean a payment of £70.74 per year for a Band D property. This equates to £1.36 a week.

Anyone wishing to comment on the proposed increase can email [email protected], use the feedback form on the website, comment on Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service’s social media channels or ring 01480 444500 between 8.30am and 5pm.