City Council Approves Reallocated Fire Department Funds

By Eric Dutkiewicz - 21Alive

City Council Approves Reallocated Fire Department Funds

March 4, 2014 Updated Mar 5, 2014 at 9:32 AM EST

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (21Alive) - Fort Wayne City Council approved Tuesday night a reallocation of funds to help the budget of the Fort Wayne Fire Department.

Council voted 6-2 to move $400,000 from the Parks & Recreation to the FWFD.

"The value of this money for us will have a large impact on us delivering a large quality of services the citizens expect," Chief Amy Biggs of the Fort Wayne Fire Department says.

The transfer of funds comes from fire department's request for an additional $800,000 to pay for the new class of the fire academy. Biggs says while it was not a budget cut for the department, the need for more money came largely due to retirement of firefighters exceeding the department's expectations.

The Board of Public Works has already moved $400,000 from to the fire department.

The council vote reallocates the additional $400,000.

Councilmen Mitch Harper, R-District 4, and Councilman John Shoaff, D-At Large, voted against the bill.

"Deferring your maintenance is dangerous," Shoaff, who has previously served on the Parks & Recreation board of directors, says. "They (Parks & Recreation) own $80 million+ of buildings--over 100 buildings--which they must maintain."

Councilman Russ Jehl, R-District 2, was not at the meeting.




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