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Abingdon Fire Dept. Budget Woes

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  • Abingdon Fire Dept. Budget Woes

    Firefighters say no more funding means cutbacks in services

    (Abingdon-AP) -- A sign of the strapped-budget times: Abingdon
    Fire Department oficials say they'll have to cut services.
    The fire department has gone through three consecutive years of
    level funding from Washington County, and officials say they have
    to trim services to keep up with growing expenses.
    Chief Joe Burke says the department has adopted stricter
    guidelines for dispatching firefighters to car wrecks. Firefighters
    won't control traffic, care for patients or do clean-up duty. They
    won't respond to calls with unknown or possible injuries, or
    situations in which injuries occur well after the wreck.
    Burke says he hopes the new policy will reduce the number of
    times the department is dispatched by about 20 percent annually.
    Money saved will be used for training, equipment and upkeep of the
    fire station and vehicles.
    Abingdon officials say nearly half of their fire department
    calls are out of city limits, to help county residents.


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