The city won a $4 million federal grant on Thursday to hire 30 new firefighters over the next two years, replenishing a force that was shrunk by budget cuts the past several years.
Although Fire Chief David W. Hollinger and other city officials were elated at the news, they said they’re still working out the details of how the grant will be used, when the new recruits could be hired, and what happens when the grant runs out in two years.
The Reading Fire Department has won a grant of nearly $1 million from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Mayor Vaughn D. Spencer announced Thursday at his third-in-three-days public meeting about reopening the 2012 budget.
The office of U.S. Sen. Bob Casey called him late in the afternoon to announce the city had been approved for an Assistance to Firefighters Grant of $999,781, Spencer told about 50 people at the Historical Society of Berks County, 940 Centre Ave.
He said he was told it was by far the largest of 10 grants totaling $1.56 million awarded to fire departments in the state. Casey is a Scranton Democrat.