WAMU 88.5 : News

Budget Cuts Coming To Montgomery County Fire Department

Play associated audio

The County Council has the final say on what gets funding and what doesn't, so members are hearing the final sales pitches from any and all who receive county money.

Thursday it was the Fire Department, which is seeing a relatively small cut of less than 2 percent to its budget.

Fire Chief Richard BowersFire Chief Richard Bowers has a simple philosophy when it comes to this year's budget.

"We have to get people what's needed, not what's wanted," he says.

Bowers is reluctantly OK with the elimination of a program that teaches high school juniors and seniors skills to become firefighters and EMTs. But he is fighting a plan to turn over more building fire code inspections to other county departments.

Council Vice President Roger Berliner supports the move, saying many businesses complain the Fire Department does not make inspections easy.

"They're perspective was, that if they wanted timely service, they had to pay overtime to get it. Now, it may not be true stories. I don't know why they would share them. But it wasn't just one or two," Berliner says.

Bowers countered that such inspections have led to a drop in deaths from fires in the county, with just one in each of the past two years.

NPR

The King Of Zydeco, The Supremes, Merle Haggard Among Recordings Joining Library Of Congress

Each year the Library of Congress adds certain sound recordings as national treasures. Curator of Recorded Sound Matthew Barton explains the cultural significance of this year's selections.
NPR

'Sweetbitter' Is A Savory Saga Of Restaurant Life And Love

Oysters, cocaine, fine wine, love triangles: Stephanie Danler's debut novel Sweetbitter follows a year in the life of a young woman working at a top-tier Manhattan restaurant.
NPR

Trump Rolls Into Washington For Biker Rally

The presumptive Republican nominee for president addressed Rolling Thunder, the annual gathering of motorcyclists, on Sunday. The group seeks to raise awareness of veterans' issues.
NPR

After Breast Cancer Diagnosis, She Channeled Her Ups And Downs Into Texts

NPR's Scott Simon talks with Natalie Sun about her project, textingwithcancer.com. The website won a Webby award, and documents her pessimism and optimism while undergoing chemotherapy.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.