Harrisburg’s City council has approved a federal grant worth $1.5m which will finance the hiring of eight full-time firefighters from now until 2013. This move was contrary to the recommendation from the Act 47 fiscal recovery plan. Had the city followed that, five firefighters would have been “fired,” excuse the pun. But according to an article in Penn Live, the recovery plan’s coordinator was said to have expressed “surprise” that there are only around 70 firefighters in Harrisburg (which is eight less than the plan calls for).
Firing Not So Easy
The bottom line is however, even if they had to, firefighters couldn’t be so easily let go. They have a union contract that only expires at the end of next year. By then it is likely “there will be enough attrition to allow for more hirings.” As well, since the plan was introduced last month, five firefighters have already filed their retirement paper work.