21/01/2013

Democratic Decision on Balmossie Fire Station Should be Respected

As Dundee Labour spokesperson on Tayside Fire and Rescue Board I have responded to speculation about the future of Balmossie Fire Station.  I have supported the retention of Balmossie Fire Station on the two occasions when it was under threat of losing full-time night-time cover.  I'm clear that the new Scottish Fire and Rescue Service should not be used as cover to change the provision at Balmossie.


It would be a travesty if one of the first acts of the new Scottish Fire and Rescue Service was to overturn a democratic decision made by local councillors from across Tayside to retain full-time night-time cover at Balmossie. This decision has been made not once but twice and it should be respected. If the argument is that parts of Angus need an improved service then lets make the case and campaign for better funding. It is wrong to play one area off against another. The current system of governance of Tayside Fire and Rescue Service is far from perfect but at least by having local councillors making the decisions we were ensuring a level of local accountability. It would undermine the credibility of the new Scottish Fire and Rescue Board if they came in and immediately overturned a local democratic decision. They must listen to the voice of local politicians and much more importantly local people and on Balmossie the message was loud and clear the case for reducing cover was not supported by local people.