Redundancy offers for fire service staff

HUNDREDS of fire service staff across South Yorkshire have been invited to apply for voluntary redundancy to help bosses save money in response to Government funding cuts.

Around 250 support staff workers and 40 members of staff in the fire service control room have been told they are eligible for redundancy.

An announcement was made this week and all employees are due to receive a letter by the end of the month.

The fire service is battling to balance the books after being told it is set to lose 9 million in Government funding over the next four years.

Before this week's redundancy announcement, Chief Fire Officer Mark Smitherman had already announced that support department budgets would be reduced by 25 per cent by 2015 to help minimise the effect of funding cuts on frontline services.

A Fire Service spokesman said: "Due to the Government funding cuts, by 2015 we are likely to receive at least 9 million less per year compared to current funding levels.

"Over 75 per cent of our budget is spent on staff costs so it is regrettable but inevitable that our staffing levels will reduce in the coming years.

"We are determined to protect frontline services as far as possible.

"All corporate and control room staff have been informed that they may apply for voluntary redundancy if they wish to do so."

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