Proposal to slash Olean FD pulled

OLEAN, N.Y. (WIVB) — A controversial proposal to slash Olean's fire department in half is now off the table.

After more than two hours of sometimes heated discussions Tuesday night, the city lawmaker who sponsored the proposal pulled it. The plan would have cut the department from 40 full-time firefighters to 20 and outsourced the city's ambulance service.

Olean Mayor Linda Witte said, "It's the time of year that 20 families, the firemen's families, shouldn't have to go through this at this time of year. They pay taxes, they raise their kids here, most of people have grown up their whole entire life here and they don't deserve this right now."

The firefighters union filed a grievance against the city on Monday. Councilman Jim Brady, who sponsored the proposal, told News 4 he pulled it because he's tired from a seven-year fight to make cuts that would save Olean money.

Brady says he does not plan on revisiting the issue.

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