The Fire and Rescue Authority is tasked with governing and overseeing the provision of fire and rescue services for Staffordshire. Our members comprise councillors from both Staffordshire County Council and Stoke-on-Trent City Council who are chosen as the representatives from those Councils to sit on the Authority. The number of Councillors from each Council is calculated by a reference to the size of its population. The number of Councillors from any political party on the Authority also has to reflect the political balance across Staffordshire County Council and Stoke City Council. The Councillors have to directly represent the interests of all of the people of Staffordshire.
Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Authority was created as a separate corporate body in 1997, the Fire Authority became the Fire and Rescue Authority with the implementation of the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004. It consists of 21 councillors, 5 appointed by Stoke-on-Trent City Council and 16 by Staffordshire County Council. The Members are appointed on the basis of the political balance at each constituent authority. The Members are appointed on the basis of the political balance at each constituent authority. The current political balance (2017/18) is 14 Conservative, 5 Labour and 2 City Independent. There are no independent members appointed to the Authority. As our name implies, the Authority is responsible to the people living and working in the City and County Council areas for their community fire safety.
To do this we employ firefighters and others to give fire safety advice to fight fires and attend road traffic accidents and other emergencies such as flooding.
We have a statutory duty to carry out community fire safety. In performing these duties we work with the Chief Fire Officer/Chief Executive, who is directly responsible to the Authority and acts as its principal adviser. Once the Authority has set its budget for the year, it precepts for the money needed from the Council Tax payer, as part of the bill sent out each year by district councils. The Authority appoints its Chair and Vice-Chair annually.
The Authority approve statutory plans covering its activities. The most important is the Corporate Safety Plan, also known as the Integrated Risk Management Plan. They monitor the budget, both revenue and capital, throughout the financial year and publish performance indicators, as required by the Audit Commission. They also appoint the Chief Fire Officer/Chief Executive, Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Secretary, Treasurer/151 Officer and Directors.
The Authority holds full meetings, six times a year, together with meetings of its committees. Meetings are usually held at Fire Service Headquarters, Pirehill and are open to the public.