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Fire Services Act 2003

Section 3: supplemental provisions

17.This section sets out definitions of terms used elsewhere in the Act. It defines “fire authority” by reference to other legislation. A fire authority is defined as an authority for the time being constituted as a fire authority by the Fire Services Act 1947 (c. 41) or any combination scheme made under it (see section 38(1) of that Act). Section 4 of that Act (as amended) provides that the council of every non-metropolitan county shall, subject to the provisions of that Act, be the fire authority for the area of the council. The establishment and membership of metropolitan fire and civil defence authorities is dealt with in sections 26 and 27 of the Local Government Act 1985 (c. 51). Section 37 of and paragraph 2(2) of Schedule 11 to that Act provide that references in the 1947 Act to a fire authority include the metropolitan fire and civil defence authorities. The London fire and civil defence authority became the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority under the Greater London Authority Act 1999 (c. 29).

18.A fire brigade is defined to mean a brigade maintained under the Fire Services Act 1947.

19.Section 3 also deals with the application of the Act to Northern Ireland (subsection (4)). Powers under the Act in its application to Northern Ireland are to be exercised by the Northern Ireland Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety. In relation to Northern Ireland, references in the Act to the fire authority are references to the Fire Authority of Northern Ireland and references to a fire brigade are references to a fire brigade within the meaning of the Fire Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1984 (S.I. 1984/1821 (N.I.11)). The power to make an order in Northern Ireland is exercised by statutory rule and orders made under section 1(1)(a) (orders to fix or modify conditions of service) are subject to negative resolution in the Northern Ireland Assembly.

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