Federal grant expected to offset Detroit firefighter layoffs

Jun 27, 2012

A round of firefighter layoffs in Detroit might not be as severe as city officials announced earlier this week.

Michigan U.S. Senator Carl Levin says Detroit will be awarded a $22.5 million federal grant that would save most of the fire department jobs slated for layoff.

Word of the grant comes just a few days after the layoff announcement. The job cuts were to take effect at the end of July.

In a statement, Senator Levin says it's "vital that we maintain the fire protection our citizens need, even during times of tight budgets."

City officials had not expected to hear whether the grant would be awarded until September. Mayor Dave Bing says getting the money sooner is great news.

Even with the grant, the city will still have to lay off 56 firefighters. A spokeswoman for Mayor Bing says those firefighters are expected to be called back eventually as other firefighters retire.