A new report sent to Toledo City Council members by the city auditor shows overtime expenses in January were on the rise.
The report states general fund overtime totaled $511,468 in January, compared to $285,451 in January 2012. Fire and Rescue overtime totaled $288,450, compared to $79,126 in January 2012.
"Very concerned, because it's three times the amount that it was last year in January, and we've put a lot of people into the fire classes that have graduated, so this is very unusual," said Councilman George Sarantou.
Fire Lt. Matt Hertzfeld says the city has to keep 103 firefighters on duty on a daily basis.
"[We need to continue] maintaining our line strength at 103. There's also presently a class that's going on that draws personnel from the line that are instructors to go out and teach that class. There's also paramedic continuing education, which contributes to that number, as well. At this point, we're projected to be about the same as 2012, and 2012 was down quite a bit from the three previous years," explained Hertzfeld.
Councilman Mike Collins says one month does not make a trend, but this is a budget issue he will be watching.
"I don't want to go into November and then have someone question, ‘Well, when you saw the beginnings of this in January, why didn't someone stop and ask the question then?'" said Collins.
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