Plan to virtually eliminate Cincinnati fire department 'brownouts' outlined

Fire chief submits analysis report

CINCINNATI - City leaders announced a plan to virtually end fire department brownouts and boost staffing on Sunday.

The measures would permanently end rotating brownouts at Cincinnati’s 26 fire stations, Fire Chief Richard Braun told WCPO. By continuing to spend overtime, the addition of a newly graduated recruit class and another recruit class tentatively scheduled to graduate by Fall, the city and the fire department hope to terminate brownouts and overtime spending by year’s end.

Thanks to nearly $2.5 million in overtime, brownouts are limited to up to five pieces of equipment every day, Braun said. The city will continue spending overtime, and coupled with the addition of new recruits hitting the street, brownouts will be reduced to virtually zero.

City Council must approve continued overtime spending for the budget that begins July 1.

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