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FILE PHOTO: HESPERIA STAR

Grant to rehire firefighters hits snag

The Hesperia City Council will have to wait a little longer before they can get back nine firefighters, after they came across a roadblock from San Bernardino County on Tuesday night.

The council and Hesperia Fire Protection District were scheduled to look at the requirements of the federally funded fire and emergency response award, which would increase the fire district by nine positions.

“I wish I could give you good news or bad news, but I can’t give you any news,” Mayor Bill Holland said, by phone. “We had late developing issues from the county, so we’ll bring back the item during our next meeting on Feb. 19.”

Holland said he could not elaborate on the content of the county issues.

In December, the city received the $2 million federal grant to be used to rehire personnel, which were released after the city cut $1.4 million from the fire district’s budget in July 2011.

Once approved, funding from the grant will pay 100 percent of the full salary and benefits for the fire safety positions for a two-year period, according to the city.

A city staff report includes hiring options such as captain, engineer and firefighter/paramedic at station 306, or two firefighter/ paramedics at station 304.

The Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response grant came from the Federal Emergency Management Agency through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The objective of the fire grant is to augment or restore local fire departments staffing and deployment capabilities to effectively respond to emergencies.

 Rene De La Cruz may be reached at (760) 951-6227  or at RDeLaCruz@VVDailyPress.com.


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