Wichita Fire Department fully staffed, but dealing with overtime issues

August 11, 2018 - 1:50 am

The Wichita Fire Department is getting ready for its next class of recruits coming up in September, this coming after they graduated 10 other recruits in its June class.

The department is set to have 443 full time employees in the coming budget year, which is10 less than last year. Those positions lost were grant-funded positions. While the department *is* fully staffed, increasing overtime is putting financial demands on them, which if left to continue, could cause them to be 600-thousand over budget for the year.

Chief Tammy Snow says that as of July, they are 17-percent higher in overtime, due to vacations and holidays.  The new recruits coming on will help soften the blow, but Matt Schulte, the President of the Wichita Firefighter's Union suggests that it may be time for the city to have a staffing study done to see if a boosting in staff is necessary. The last one was done in 2000.

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