Atlantic City (NJ) Firefighters Avoid Layoffs

Atlantic City firefighters hired under a federal grant will not be laid off Wednesday, when the money is set to run out, officials tell The Press of Atlantic City.

The city was set to lay off 51 firefighters and demote another eight as the result of the two-year Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response grant ending. There has been no news on a two-year extension grant the city requested.

Fire Chief Dennis Brooks said there was $125,000 left in the overtime budget because the department had been “very responsible with our money.”

The city was awarded $9.5 million in 2011, which allowed the rehiring of nearly 30 firefighters who had been laid off as part of major budget cuts in 2010. They also were able to expand the number of personnel who respond to fires.

As positions have opened up, firefighters were moved onto the city payroll, while new firefighters were hired to fill the grant spots. The city hired 27 firefighters this year alone under the grant.

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