The Reno City Council met this week to discuss how to spend tax payer’s money for the fiscal year 2016 budget, which is nearly $170 million. Reno Public Radio's Danna O'Connor reports much of that money will go toward public safety.
More than two-thirds of that budget will be spent on adding nearly 50 new public safety jobs. Ten of those jobs would go toward hiring 10 more Reno firefighters.
At the meeting, Councilwoman Neoma Jardon asked if the 10 firefighters would open up the browned out stations in the city.
"Station 19 was closed 11 out of 12 months last year," Jardon said. "Will the additional firefighters open that station anymore?"
According to Fire Chief Mike Hernandez, 10 more firefighters isn’t enough manpower, but it would provide staffing flexibility.
"It would give me greater depth of resources, so that when we have those times when we have to open up a station, I'll have that much more boots on the ground."
Last year, due to the lack of funding, the city laid off more than 30 firefighters. Hernandez has asked City Council to fund 15 new firefighter positions, but City Manager Andrew Clinger recommends hiring ten.
To beef up other areas of public safety, the Reno Police department will receive funding for 19 more positions.