Peoria council signals police, fire cuts

Peoria council signals police, fire cuts

PEORIA (AP) — The Peoria City Council is signaling a willingness to shrink the size of both the fire department and police force to find a way out of a $6 million budget shortfall.

The (Peoria) Journal Star reports Monday night's 7-4 vote in favor of making the cuts was nonbinding but the final vote is only weeks away.

The vote was taken after both the city's police and fire chiefs that the budget cuts would result in longer response times to some calls, increased insurance costs and fewer seizures of drugs.

But city officials said other departments have been cut as much as possible and that further cuts would hurt other city services. And one councilman warned that raising some taxes on businesses would drive some of those businesses to nearby communities.