ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) — A plan set to go before the Board of Alderman Friday morning will drastically reduce the benefits deemed “unaffordable” for new hires of the St. Louis City Fire department.

The plan forwarded by Mayor Francis Slay will up the age requirement firefighters need to be before they can retire, and new hires would see fewer cost-of-living increases with no more deferred retirement options.

If passed will these new cuts make it difficult to find new recruits? Slay’s chief-of-staff Jeff Rainford says, no.

“Right now we have no shortages of young men and woman who want to be police officers and firefighters,” Rainford told KMOX. “Many this will be their chosen career, but for others it’s because options in manufacturing and construction aren’t there.”

Rainford said something must be done because city payments into the pension system have risen nearly 600-percent in the past decade.

Slay’s proposal has been blasted by members of the firefighters union for not following protocol. Chris Molitor, president of the union, said “It is further proof that the mayor had no true desire to reach a compromise with firefighters.”

Jeff Rainford was guest on Total Information AM. Listen to the full interview below.

Copyright KMOX Radio


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