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Lawrence mayor suggests recording firefighters

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lantigua william jan2010ap Lawrence mayor suggests recording firefighters

Lawrence Mayor William Lantigua

The mayor of Lawrence is under fire for asking citizens to make video recordings of firefighters responding to fires, accidents and other calls.

Mayor William Lantigua says he has received several complaints from people concerned about slow response times by firefighters, with some even suggesting the slow downs may be deliberate.

The financially strapped city recently laid off 23 firefighters and closed three stations. Critics of the cuts say the department is now dangerously understaffed.

Lantigua says some callers have volunteered to video firefighters on the job.

Acting Fire Chief Brian Murphy tells The Eagle-Tribune there’s no reason to believe firefighters are doing anything but their best. A firefighters’ union official called Lantigua’s request “unbelievable.”

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