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Fire service call-handling overspend
Fire chiefs have revealed an overspend in a project to move control room staff from its Birkenshaw headquarters to Leeds when a new £3 million 999 call-handling contract is implemented next January.
The Telegraph & Argus has previously reported how West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) said operators will be transferred to the service’s Safety Central building on Stanningley Road, Bramley, as part of a cost-cutting move which will see 999 call handlers from West Yorkshire and South Yorkshire answer each other’s calls at peak times.
But a report to WYRFS’s community safety committee, which is due to meet at its Birkenshaw headquarters today, said that while the authority had received a grant of £3.6 million for the project in March 2012, the total cost would be £3,976,485 – an overspend of £376,485.
The extra cash needed will be equally split between the West Yorkshire and South Yorkshire fire authorities as part of a collaborative agreement.
It added: “The authority has a contingency budget of £400,000 to cover such overspend.”
The new equipment for receiving 999 calls and mobilising emergency vehicles will save £40,000 a year.