Monday night Peoria leaders made it clear that they don’t want to leave any stone untouched, while they search for a resolution to the city’s looming budget crisis. At Monday’s meeting department leaders went in detail discussing proposed cuts from Peoria’s Fire Chief to the Interim Police Chief and the Community Development Director.
We told you previously about the possibility of consolidating a fire station on the Southside, along with a proposed closure of two stations as well. Monday night however, Community Development Director Ross Black discussed several proposed policy changes in the community development office. Changes on the table include a removal of the front desk, changing building safety inspection timelines and large assignment areas for officers.
Although all of these cuts are simply proposed, the final decision regarding if cutting public safety positions like firefighters will be in the hands of council. Less firefighters could mean longer response times to emergencies.
“I think I would be remise as the Fire Chief if I didn’t have concerns,” said Peoria Fire Chief Olehy. “I think if you ask [several other city departments] they would also express concerns. We also understand that there’s a budget issue that needs to be dealt with.”
Still no word on a specific date when leaders plan to vote on these proposed cuts. We’ll bring you coverage as leaders come to a resolution.