SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - A Seminole County commissioner who sparked controversy about a grocery run firefighters made is ignoring the backlash that blew up after Channel 9's story aired.
Since WFTV's story aired last week, more than 2,000 people have signed a petition asking Commissioner Brenda Carey to apologize.
The controversy started after Carey texted the Station 36 firefighters' superiors about them going to a Winn-Dixie less than a mile from their fire station while they were on the clock.
Tuesday was the first commission meeting since the story broke last week, but Carey again ignored speaking out about the controversy and instead praised the work of all emergency responders, according to Channel 9's Tim Barber.
Carey told Barber over the phone last week that she was just looking out for taxpayer dollars and the text was not meant as a complaint, although it eventually turned into one.
County officials have since decided against disciplining the firefighters and are instead making them review the policy, which discourages firefighters from stopping for food unless they are on their way back from a call.
Carey declined WFTV's request for an interview twice last week, and she walked out a back door before we could ask her any questions on Tuesday, Barber said.
"I just feel it's very petty," an anonymous firefighter from the station told Barber last week. "It's just kind of disheartening, you know? We take a lot of pride in the Seminole County Fire Department, and I think we do a really good job."
The firefighters said they were just going for sausage, biscuits and orange juice, but they had their gear with them just in case.
"We are ready to go anytime, 24/7," the unnamed firefighter told Channel 9.