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.

WAMU 88.5

Taking Great Photos On Vacation Or "Staycation"

Professional photographers give us the latest on cameras, smart phones and shooting tips for great vacation photos this summer -- and every day.

NPR

Squeezed By Drought, California Farmers Switch To Less Thirsty Crops

Water scarcity is leading farmers away from planting staples and towards planting higher-value, lower-water specialty crops. Think wine grapes and pomegranates instead of citrus and avocados.
WAMU 88.5

Obama's Trip to Africa & Foreign Aid

By visiting Africa this month, President Obama is drawing attention to one of the diplomatic tools that most directly shapes America's relationships with other countries: foreign aid and assistance. But now all policy makers at home feel the United States is pursuing the soundest strategy when it comes to providing aid abroad. We explore the issue with the official in charge of the Africa portfolio for the United States Agency for International Development.

WAMU 88.5

Taking Great Photos On Vacation Or "Staycation"

Professional photographers give us the latest on cameras, smart phones and shooting tips for great vacation photos this summer -- and every day.

Leave a Comment

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