Some Volusia fire stations could close for lack of funding

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VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. - Firefighters in Volusia County say they need more manpower and more funding or else some stations could close.

"We're down almost 70 firefighters, from our peak strength," union spokesperson Chris Cusumano said.

As a result, the union says the department has already spent the overtime budget for the entire year in one month.

Union officials said the county is considering brownouts, meaning some stations would close for hours at a time.

The county said brownouts are under consideration, but a spokesperson wouldn't comment any further.

In a statement to Eyewitness News, Dave Byron, Volusia County government spokesperson, said the complaints are contract negotiation tactics by the union and "we're not going to respond to the union which is attempting to gain leverage through the news media."

The department said it has fallen behind the national standard.

"We've known as a fire department for a long time and as a union for a long time, that the manpower we have on our apparatuses does not meet the nation standard," Cusumano said.