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Budget for 2024/25 Approved

On Thursday, 15 February, Royal Berkshire Fire Authority unanimously agreed Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service’s 2024/25 Budget and Band D Council Tax precept.

The council tax precept increase for 2024/25 is 2.99% (£2.36 more a year per B and D household), which will enable the Service to continue to develop how it delivers its response service to the public, as well as make capital investment in fire stations, vehicles and ICT equipment, supporting its teams to deliver a great public service to the people of Berkshire.

Councillor Jeff Brooks, Chair of Royal Berkshire Fire Authority, said:

“This is a budget that not only delivers on the progress made across the estate so far, but crucially identifies key areas where Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service can develop and improve its response to the public.

“I am aware of the financial pressures that all residents are facing in this current climate. It is therefore important for you to know that the Fire Authority is committed to delivering excellent services and good value for money, with this year’s Budget. 

“Within a range of investments, we plan to strengthen our crewing model to improve fire engine availability to the public. This means that at times throughout 2024/25 we will be able to have up to ten firefighters more than our normal establishment level.

“Funding will also be prioritised to continue our ambitious capital investment programme in our fire stations, vehicles and ICT equipment, including measures to improve the equality of our facilities to attract and retain a more diverse team and make our buildings more environmentally sustainable. For example, we are currently working on introducing solar panels, electrical charging points and LED lighting across our estate and this budget will continue this investment.

“In addition, we will deliver a significant programme of efficiencies, as well as initiating a series of invest-to-save projects and harnessing productivity gains from the use of new technology. We will continue to lobby Government for the appropriate level of central funding to continually develop and improve our services to the public.”

To find out more about the budget, please visit our website. A video recording of the Fire Authority meeting will shortly be uploaded to our YouTube channel.