Posted: Wed 18th Nov 2020

North Wales councils asked to give extra £1.1m to fund region’s fire service

North Wales news and information

North Wales’ six councils will be asked to contribute an extra £1.13m to fund the region’s fire service for 2021/22.

Last week’s meeting of the North Wales Fire and Rescue Service approved the proposed budget which will see the authorities up their contributions by £1.13m on 2020/21 – resulting in an overall budget of £37,074,237

As it is not a precepting service such as North Wales Police, all six north Wales councils contribute money every year towards the cost of providing fire and rescue services.

How much the county councils contribute depends on how much the authority has estimated it will need to cover its running costs, with 72% or £26.7m of total expenditure being spent on staff –  which assumes a pay award of 2% for all employees.

If approved, Flintshire, which contains 22% of the region’s population, will pay an additional £314,206 which brings their contribution up to £8,282,403.

Wrexham, meanwhile, which has 19% of the population, will pay an extra £102,215, and Gwynedd will contribute an extra £232,698 in line with its population share of 18%.

The report concluded: “The planning process has confirmed a net expenditure requirement for 2021/22 of £37.07m which is a year on year increase of 3.16%.

“The budget proposal for 2021/22 increases contributions from constituent authorities by £1.13m.

“Employee costs account for 72% of net expenditure and the draft budget for 2021/22 is £26.7m, assuming a pay award of 2% for all staff.

“Work will continue to ensure the 2021/22 revenue budget reflects the uncertain environment within which we are currently operating due to Covid-19. This may require budget allocations to be revised between budget headings to address changing priorities.”

The draft budget will now be presented to all six authorities before formal ratifiation ahead of the 2021/22 financial year.

By Gareth Williams – Local Democracy Reporter

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