Saginaw looks to county to help fill budget gap

Saginaw city is knocking on the doors of the county board of commissioners for help in trimming the city budget all in the name of public safety.

The city of Saginaw hopes to fill a $3.2 million gap with assistance from the Sheriff's department.

However, the Saginaw sheriff says he's not on board with the current proposal.

Accoring to Saginaw city leaders, come July 2013, the city will only be able to afford 55 police officers and 33 firefighters. This, despite a spot on the nation's most-violent crimes list and over 200 fires annually.

There are currently 81 police and 50 firefighters on the streets. Assistant city manager, Phillip Ludos says the city is working to avoid making more cuts.

"These kinds of reductions, we're just going to have to look at where our focus is going to be," says Ludos.

One plan proposed by city leaders contracts services with the Sheriff's department.

However, Sheriff William Federspiel says he has the same answer now that he did six months ago.

"No. I would say no. I am not in a position politically or structurally to even consider merger or assimilating," says Sheriff Federspiel.

The city manager and assistant city manager plan to meet with county commissioners a second time in early December to discuss a potential merger.