LINCOLN–(KFOR Mar. 16)–Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird on Thursday received an official endorsement to her re-election campaign from the Lincoln Firefighters Association, IAFF Local 644.
LFA president Adam Schrunk said at a news conference inside the Firefighters Reception Hall that Gaylor Baird, ” has been there for firefighters and their families in her first term. When it comes to public safety, she has invested in making sure we have resources we need to keep Lincoln safe.”
Schrunk also said that Gaylor Baird delivered on her promise during her first term, which includes investments in building new and renovating existing fire stations, land purchases for future fire stations, replacing LFR’s fleet of fire trucks and engines, putting an eighth medic unit into service and support toward a grant application for more firefighters and paramedics.
KFOR News asked Schrunk about staffing in the department and he said they are a little short in the number of paramedics. He mentioned anywhere from 10 to 12 spots are open for paramedics.
“Just short enough to make it difficult for our current people on the streets and in medic units,” according to Schrunk.
Mayor Gaylor Baird said public safety will still be a top priority by continuing to invest in personnel, equipment and facilities.
“I am committed to upholding our obligation to fund their pension, maintain our fire stations, and provide them with the resources and staffing levels they need to continue to deliver the highest level of service to our community.”
A couple of fire stations, No. 7 at Cotner Boulevard and “A” Street and No. 9 off of Cotner and Vine, are being considered for replacement and some early talks have indicated those facilities would be moved to spots close to their current locations.
As for which of the mayor candidates the Lincoln Firefighters Association had talked to, Schrunk said Gaylor Baird and Republican candidate Suzanne Geist were the only ones to reach out and go through an interview process, which includes answering surveys.
“In (Gaylor Baird’s) case, it’s pretty tough to beat her,” Schrunk said of what the mayor has done the past four years.