Police Concerned Pink Slips On The Way

Police officers in Firebaugh say they cannot afford to lose any officers, after city officials announce Firebaugh's budget deficit reaches nearly 300-thousand dollars.

For several months, Firebaugh city leaders have been meeting in closed and open sessions trying to come with ideas on how close a budget gap.

City leaders say reserves are tapped out and something has to be done.

For the past 5 years, police officer Juan Castillo has patrolled the streets of Firebaugh.

He and others are concerned a 300-thousand dollar budget deficit could mean pinks slips are on the way.

Officer Juan Castillo says, "I can speak for most of our officers that none of us want to go, we all want to stay here all we are asking is that the city and sit down with us and work with us."

For the past 4 years, Castillo says officers have made concessions and given up benefits to the city in order to keep more officers on the street.

Castillo says, "And we are willing to do it again, we are ready to open up the contract and make this work."

Currently the Firebaugh Police Department only has 11 officers, that's includes the chief.

Recently, two officer positions were frozen due to a lacks of funds.

Firebaugh Mayor Doctor Marcia Sablan says the council is looking at everything on the table, but public safety is a top priority.

Mayor Dr. Marcia Sablan says, "There has been no decisions made yet and we are still looking at the figures. Of course, we are looking at ways to increase revenues at the same time.