Allen Park to lay off entire fire department

Feb 23, 2011

There may soon be no firefighters available in Allen Park.

The city council has voted to lay off the entire fire department.

A movie studio-deal gone bad is getting some of the blame for Allen Park’s financial troubles.

The Detroit suburb bought an old Visteon facility in 2008 for almost $25 million, banking on a plan to lease the property to Unity Studios.

The deal flopped  and now Allen Park is broke.

Last night, the city council announced all 25 of the city’s firefighters, plus its interim chief will be getting pink slips.

Jeff O’Riley is a sergeant with the fire department and its union president. He says the council said nothing about who Allen Park residents will call for fire or rescue services.

"We have no idea," O'Riley says. "Some of the council members have talked about outsourcing to other cities, but we haven't been given a plan."

City leaders did not respond to calls for information.

Allen Park has a population of about 25,000.