NEWBURGH – Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney (D, NY-18) has changed his tune regarding the City of Newburgh facing the possible layoffs of firefighters.
Two years ago as federal funding he had secured was expiring and the city could not retain 12 firemen, Maloney said it was “outrageous that after three or four years of warning that Newburgh city government has not prepared for this event.”
He called the city’s failure to plan for continue funding of firefighters “irresponsible and dangerous.”
As the city now faces a similar scenario with the possible layoffs of a dozen firefighters and another dozen police officers, Maloney has a different outlook given that the City Manager is Joseph Donat.
“I have a great deal of confidence in the new city manager,” Maloney said. “I know he cares deeply about first responders in the City of Newburgh. He is the former member of my staff who was the point person for securing those previous federal grants. So, I have a lot of confidence in the city manager and how much care he has for the first responders. Having said that, it is obviously a very troubling situation. We are monitoring it very closely.”
Maloney said he is working with the city to see what can be done to craft a solution to the problem. “The federal grants are always going to be a poor substitute for a strong local tax base and a strong local financial plan,” he said.