Excerpts from the ChicagoTribune.com:

Elgin Fire Department shift staffing cuts took effect Thursday following a court ruling against the Elgin Association of Firefighters Local 439, which claimed the changes would put first-responders firefighters at risk of injury.

Judge David Akemann issued an order ruling in the city’s favor late Wednesday afternoon. The ruling denies the 130-member fire union’s motion for a preliminary injunction regarding the shift staffing changes, which were the result of cuts to the city’s 2018 budget. Akemann also canceled a court hearing on the matter scheduled for Thursday afternoon.

In the complaint, the union argued, “If the city reduces shift staffing, the union predicts that the number of injuries will increase significantly,” and Akemann wrote that the union had not shown irreparable injury that would necessitate the intervention of this Court.

The lawsuit followed the Elgin City Council’s Dec. 20 approval of a $259 million budget. The budget includes $700,000 in cuts to fire department overtime by reducing two positions per shift. 

The union filed its case Dec. 22 and staffing levels remained as they were until Thursday. Elgin uses a staffing model that relies on overtime to fill fire department shifts to limit costs such as insurance and pension benefits.

Galli said that firefighters will be learning how to adapt to the changes as they go along.

thanks Dan