The Essex Fire Authority was significant for the discussion on the Draft Initial Local Business Case for Joint Governance of Police and Fire & Rescue in Essex.
I tries, unsuccessfully, to get this item deferred as this paper was distributed very late (less than five days before the meeting). My motion was defeated with only six supporting (all of the Labour and Liberal Democrat groups).
There was a Liberal Democrat motion that said "... we see no benefit to the rent of essex, either financially or democratically, the takeover of running Essex Fire service by the Police and Crime Commissioner ..."
This motion was defeated by seven votes to fourteen (Labour and the Liberal Democrats were joined by one UKIP on this occasion).
We are at the mercy of the Tories in this kind of debate, so heavily outnumbered are we. The others (no-Conservative members) either abstained, were absent, or voted with the Tories (other UKIP councillors) - which was disappointing. Their meek compliance to Conservative wishes was shocking to behold.
The taking over of the Essex Fire Authority by the PCC may be a done deal, but surely we cannot cave in without some attempt at making the majority Conservative caucus work a bit.
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