Mid and West Wales Fire Authority agrees to £1.2m cuts

Rural response pump
Image caption Full-time fire fighters will still be based in three Pembrokeshire towns

No fire stations will close despite an agreement to cut £1.2m from the Mid and West Wales Fire Service's budget in the next financial year.

Members of the authority agreed that cuts have to be made due to a drop in the levy collected from the six constituent local authorities.

The fire service will use £605,000 from reserves to offset the funding drop.

It means administrative cuts of £840,000 as well as some possible changes to management structures.

But some authority members have voiced concerns that using reserves would only increase the pressure for further cuts during the next two years.

It is also expected that the authority's capital expenditure programme will also be delayed for a year.

Mid and West Wales fire service covers Swansea, Neath Port Talbot, Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire, Ceredigion and Powys.

'Good day'

The authority has agreed to keep 13 full-time firefighters at its stations at Milford Haven, Pembroke Dock and Ammanford.

This follows last week's decision to save the three stations from closure as well as others at Knighton, Montgomery, Cymmer, Pontyates, Pontarddulais and Gowerton.

Fire Brigades Union (FBU) Brigade secretary, Barrie Davies said it was "a good day" for front-line services in the region.

"We are very pleased with the fire authority's decisions today and last week," he said.

"The proposal to change the stations at Milford Haven, Pembroke Dock and Ammanford from a day crew service to an on-call service would have been a severe blow to services in those areas.

"Changing the service to an on-call service would have meant delays in dealing with emergencies," said Mr Davies.

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