OGDENSBURG, N.Y. (WWNY) - A firefighter has been terminated so the Ogdensburg Fire Department is now down to 19 firefighters.
It may stay that way for awhile as a city-wide hiring freeze has been put in place. The most recent reduction came this week when firefighter Jarred Wells was dismissed following a misconduct hearing.
As recently as December, the department had 27 firefighters. The number was cut to 20 in this year’s city budget.
“We had been told by Mr. Jellie that 20 was his red line and he’s violating that. There is no trust here,” said Jason Bouchard, Ogdensburg Professional Firefighters Local 1799 president.
“As I said previous, it’s not about targeting any one department. It’s about saving the city’s financial condition. And I continue to urge the fire department to join us in that effort and cease the back and forth battling,” said Stephen Jellie, Ogdensburg city manager.
The fire union’s grievances are over how the situation with Wells has been handled and the other staff reductions.