To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the result of the discussions he had with members of the South Yorkshire fire and civil defence authority in respect of their 1990–91 financial situation.
My right hon. and noble Friend the Minister of State met at their request a delegation from South Yorkshire fire and civil defence authority on 15 January to listen to their concerns about the standard spending assessment for the authority for 1990–91, which is 11·8 per cent. greater than their grant-related expenditure assessment for 1989–90.
My right hon. and noble Friend took note of the concerns expressed and Her Majesty's inspectorate of fire services will monitor closely the operational capacity of the South Yorkshire fire service. Ministers have agreed to consider any new evidence on standard spending assessments with regard to the possibility of making changes for 1991–92 if this should prove necessary.