Budget for Yakima Fire continues to be tight - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Budget for Yakima Fire continues to be tight

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YAKIMA, Wash.-- The Yakima Fire Department has cuts to its budget year after year, and things continue to be tight for them. 

Deputy Chief Dave Wilson told me they're operating at about a quarter of a million dollars less than last year even though expenses for running the department continue to grow.

The 75 uniformed firefighters in Yakima even took a 3% pay cut to save 8 jobs within the department this year.

And while the Chief says the budget for 2012 is still being ironed out, he's concerned for the future of the department and for his firefighters.

"Over the years we've just been starved a bit more and a bit more. We're still providing a service and we always will the best we can, but it's getting critical," said Chief Wilson.

Chief Wilson says he's hoping to maintain the numbers from last year into 2012, but knows something needs to be done. And cutting personnel is the last thing they want to do.

For a department of it's size YFD is about 37 firefighters short of being on par with the rest of the state.

And with the cities budget continuing to get tighter and tighter, YFD is looking at other ways to stay afloat.