JAMESTOWN, NY (WNY News Now) – The Jamestown City Council has unanimously approved the hiring of eight new firefighters for the pearl city, partially funded by a federal grant.
In mid-February the City of Jamestown received a $1.8 million dollar, three year, Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response, or SAFER, grant to hire the eight firefighters.
This approval comes after three months of deliberation over the impacts the new hires would create.
The resolution did not come without stipulations however.
Presented by Councilwoman Marie Carrubba, the agreement would satisfy the firefighter union, not constituting a new minimum staffing requirement.
They also agreed to not hold the city accountable if the new hires were not kept on the payroll once the funding expires.
The council does however, need to put in effort to find funding opportunities.
Ultimately funding this will cost the city hundreds of thousands of dollars, but council agreed that the price tag is worth it for a safer Jamestown.
“If we could make this work, we’ll certainly do our best,“ explained Councilwoman Carrubba. “We’ll certainly continue to look for funding and hope that that doesn’t happen in three years, but we have to be mindful of where we are at in our city.”
“I think everybody is aware of the need from a public safety standpoint,“ stated Councilwoman Regina Brackman. “If this will help us get to where we’re trying to get to, then I’m all for it.”
The next step is to hire the new firefighters and take them through the training process. According to Jamestown Fire Chief Matt Coon that process should be done before Thanksgiving 2023.