Firefighters Picket at City Hall in Campaign for More Staff

Firefighters continued their campaign to get City County to add four more positions to the Fire Department in next year's budget by picketing outside of City Hall on Tuesday.

During the lunch hour, several members of the Firefighters Association, along with their families, carried signs that read "100 Equals Safety."

The Association believes that increasing the daily staffing levels to 100, from the current 96, would put the proper level of manpower on the City's fire engines and ambulances. One of the demonstrators said she just wants her husband to be safe.

"Whenever you hear about, for example, like the explosion that happened, or a fire, or any type of dangerous call, of course you get very scared," said Shannon Cortez, the wife of a firefighter. "We have three children, and it's very scary."

Under next year's proposed $764 million budget, the tax rate will increase by $1.89. That means that the owner of a property valued at $100,000 will pay an extra $19 per year.

City Council will have a second and final reading of next year's budget at next week's Council meeting.


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