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SDFD Losing More Than 100 Employees

Audio

Aired 7/15/09

The San Diego Fire Department is losing more personnel than usual this year. KPBS reporter Katie Orr says changes to the city’s retirement plan prompted a lot of firefighters to take an early retirement.

— The San Diego Fire Department is losing more personnel than usual this year. KPBS reporter Katie Orr says changes to the city’s retirement plan prompted a lot of firefighters to take an early retirement.

Fire Department Spokesman Maurice Luque says in a typical year, between 60 and 80 employees leave the department. This year 120 left. Luque says 101 of those listed retirement as their reason. He says most wanted to lock in better retirement benefits including a larger paycheck and cheaper health care.

“Many of them had not planned to retire at that point in time. But to protect their benefits and to make a good business decision for themselves and their family, they retired at the end of June,” he says.

Luque says the department had anticipated losing more personnel this year and made adjustments. He says the public will not notice any change in service and all stations will remain open.

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