Fire and rescue plan 2019 – 2021
This Plan sets out the strategic vision, priorities and objectives for North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service over the next two years for how it will better respond to the need of our communities.
In forming the plan, I have considered the views of 1,000 members of the public, as well as local businesses, partners and the Fire and Rescue Service themselves, as to how the Service should evolve.
Thank you for your invaluable input – it is after all your plan.
When I took on governance of the Fire and Rescue Service, there were some immediate matters which needed an urgent response. One of these was the significant annual budget imbalance built on an unsustainable use of reserves to prop up day-to-day costs. I am pleased to report that since November 2018, excellent progress has been made in stabilising the financial situation. But there is more to do,
particularly if Government funding of fire and rescue services continues to reduce.
The challenge for the Service and its new leadership is to make sure that it not only continues to achieve the savings required, but that it also generates savings to help invest to improve the Service and make sure that firefighters can continue to protect you and make you feel safe.
Ultimately, the vision for North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service is to be an exemplary local service. We will lead the way in innovative and preventative practices, reducing vulnerability and supporting people in need, playing a pivotal role in ensuring North Yorkshire is the safest place to live and work in the country.
To achieve this, I am asking the Service to be ambitious across everything that they do.
They need to enhance and improve their core functions, and be able to adapt as these change, whether it be fighting a fire, rescuing someone from a car crash, or saving a village from a flash flood. We need the best and most innovative equipment and response model to be able to meet the needs of our communities.
Preventing incidents and protecting the most vulnerable in our communities will also require investment and innovation. The Fire and Rescue Service does well here, but I believe more can be done, not just in an emergency or as a specific initiative, but in every interaction the Service has with the public. This will mean taking bold steps and breaking down organisational barriers to ensure we join with other public services to target our resources where they are needed most.
By stabilising the finances of the Service and embedding a new Fire and Rescue Plan, we will have set the foundation for a Service which can move from strength to strength. Making this a reality is not straightforward, but with the professional, committed and engaged workforce we have, I know there is potential to make this Service the best in its class, focused on keeping people safe and feeling safe in North Yorkshire.