After learning the hard way that closed fire stations can slow responses to fires, city officials last month celebrated an almost $8.2 million federal grant that would pay for recalling laid-off firefighters and hiring more.
Now, they plan to reject about a third of the money.
The grant was enough to pay for calling back 29 laid-off firefighters plus one on military leave and for adding 20 new firefighters – a total of 50 – for two years, but Mr. Doherty decided to decline the money for the new firefighters because the city could not afford to keep paying them after the two years and because the city would have to pay unemployment benefits when they were laid off.
It is unclear whether the city will be able to afford to keep all the other 29 after two years.
Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/scranton-to-return-part-of-free-money-for-firefighters-1.1331750