Oklahoma City first responders forced to make cuts

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OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahoma City Police Chief, Bill Citty and Oklahoma City Fire Chief, Keith Bryant both presented their budgets for next year to the city council Tuesday morning.

Both are being forced to make cuts, but not drastic ones.

The police department is cutting eight officer positions.

"Nobody loses their job. They're vacant positions. And I mean just because of the budget this year, you know and having to cut the budget, it just got down to that," said Oklahoma City Police Chief Bill Citty.

The fire department plans to take Engine 51 at Fire Station 1 downtown out of service.

"We will feel an impact but again, we feel it's the most least impact to our citizens that we can do at this time," said Assistant Fire Chief, Richard Kelley.

15 firefighters who work off that rig will be moved but not laid off.

"We will disperse them at stations throughout the city. If we have opening or vacancies here at this station, we can move them over to another apparatus," said Asst. Chief Kelley.

The fire department has applied for a grant that might possibly save the fate of engine 51.

"We're working for a safer grant which is a federal grant program that we our goal, is to try to get the engine company back in service," said Asst. Chief Kelley.

The police department has had 48 positions frozen since last year but Chief Citty is hopeful that will change soon.

"I'm real optimistic about things getting better. I'm real optimistic about you know the sales tax and I know the council is too and so I don't think it's going to take very long you know to start getting those positions back," said Chief Citty.

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