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Fire Services

Volume 492: debated on Tuesday 12 May 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will make it her policy to give fire authorities the power to promote well-being. (274783)

The power to promote well-being is available to local authorities as defined in Section 1 of the Local Government Act 2000 (LGA 2000). That includes those county councils which are also fire and rescue authorities (FRAs).

The possible extension of the power to promote well- being contained within Section 2 of LGA 2000 to all FRAs was considered at the request of consultees in 2003 prior to the introduction of the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004.

The power to promote well-being is intended to reflect the unique community leadership role of local authorities and consequently it has not been extended to any other form of authority with responsibility for delivery of public services. For this reason, and because we believe the powers available to FRAs are sufficient to enable them to undertake any activities required to fulfil the duties and responsibilities placed on them by legislation and the national framework for the fire and rescue service, it was not considered appropriate to amend the scope of this power more widely.