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First Responder Middletown Layoffs

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Published on Oct 31, 2013

MIDDLETOWN, Ohio (Brad Underwood) -- First responders are on the chopping block in Middletown as the city is trying to close its budget. City Manager, Judy Gilleland, announced plans to cut 15 firefighters and 11 police offers to save the city $1.1 million dollars. Chris Klugg represents the firefighters union and says he understands the citys need to be fiscally responsible, but putting citizens at risk is not the way to do it. People, whether it be residents, business owners or visitors, they will be waiting longer when they dial 9-11, said Klugg. Klugg added both departments continue to decrease staffing over the past five years and are below standards today. If the layoffs are made, he says there will only be 13 on-duty firefighters every day in Middletown. Middletown Mayor, Larry Mulligan says the city is losing money and cuts may be the only way to save money. Mulligan released a statement that read in part:WE HAVE FACED FISCAL CHALLENGES OVER THE LAST DECADE AND PREVIOUS COUNCILS MADE REDUCTIONS WHERE THEY COULD, BUT WE HAVE NOW REACHED A POINT WHERE SIGNIFICANT CUTS ARE UNAVOIDABLE. Ten of the positions that could be cut are funded by a FEMA grant, costing the city nothing. However, that grant ends in 2014, and the city says it doesnt have the money to pay for the positions. The next budget meeting is Tuesday, November 5th.

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