Editorial: Roanoke’s budget pinches all
Roanoke firefighters raise a legitimate point in opposition to the city’s proposed budget: They need four firefighters to run the versatile fire truck called a quint. Council last year promised that level of staffing, but the proposed budget would strip the trucks to three firefighters.
That, they claim, is not enough personnel to fight fires on arrival (as two are required to enter burning structures while two stay outside). Firefighters, the public and the department’s coveted accreditation would all stand at risk.
On this point, council should go back to Fire-EMS Department Chief David Hoback and direct him to make budget revisions that protect the front line of public safety. But firefighters must realize they’ll have to give up something else and back away from the intimidation tactics they displayed during the budget hearing. (About 90 of them crowded into council chambers, rising to stand in solidarity behind their speakers.)