Middletown Fire Dept could lose three positions

By Tiffany Teasley – bio | email
MIDDLETOWN, OH (FOX19) - The Middletown Fire Dept. could be losing three positions due to budget cuts.
"The positions that aren't being filled have a great impact on our service ability," said Jon Harvey, president of the Middletown firefighters union.
The administrative deputy chief , fire Marshall, and training captain positions are proposed to be eliminated out of the city's 2010 budget according to Harvey.
"The greatest impact will be on the day-to-day operations of the division of fire, there's a lot of training that is required for us from the state, that's going to continue to slip, which is greatly going to impact the service delivery we have to the citizens of Middletown.
Harvey says the positions became vacant through attrition a year ago and were never filled, now they could be gone for good, despite a public safety levy  that promises to maintain police and fire staffing in the city.
"I don't know how you can promise the citizens those sort of things for them to vote for a levy and then they don't fulfill their obligation," Harvey said.
Harvey says after the incident earlier this year in Middletown where three firefighters were injured trying to rescue a city worker from a manhole -- it was a prime example of why they don't have anymore room to cut.
"If think the injuries to our firefighters could have been lessened is there would have been more oversight into those areas," Harvey said.
The City Manager's office did not return our calls for comment, city council members will discuss the proposed cuts at Tuesday's council meeting.
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