State firefighters association votes to censure Syracuse fire chief

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) - A union representing 18,000 professional firefighters, including members of the Syracuse fire department, passed a resolution to censure Syracuse Fire Chief Paul Linnertz for what they describe as "conduct detrimental to the department and to public safety".

The New York State Professional Fire Fighters Association (NYSPFFA) presented the resolution to delegates at an annual convention, which is being held in Syracuse.

According to a spokesman for the organization, members of the Syracuse Firefighters Association Local 280 are claiming that "Chief Linnertz maintains a hostile and aggressive tone toward department members" and denies or delays benefits in the contract.

“Chief Linnertz will be notified of our disappointment, and our actions will be shared through the Washington-D.C.-based International Association of Fire Fighters,” said NYSPFFA president Sam Fresina.    

Tensions between the local union and Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner have been rising since she took steps to close Fire Station 7 on East Fayette Street in May 2013, forcing the department to restructure staffing.

A spokesman for Mayor Stephanie Miner’s Office said they have no comment, when contacted by NewsChannel 9 on Tuesday.

Linnertz also said he had no comment.

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