Firefighters fill council chambers following MacDonald comments

Firefighters fill council chambers following MacDonald comments
A Cornwall fire truck is parked at the new low-level bridge while officials investigate a gas leak.

CORNWALL, Ontario – More than a dozen Cornwall firefighters filled the city council chambers Monday night as a show of support following comments made last week by a city councillor.

The firefighters were responding to suggestions last week that they are “eating” too much of the municipal pie.

“The firefighters might not want to hear this…they keep eating more and more. We have to come up with solutions to solve that,” Coun. Mark MacDonald said Friday at a budget meeting. “The difference between a pig and a human being is that a pig knows when to stop eating.”

Firefighters wanted to send a message Monday night in response.

“It’s that – but it’s also more that when we have a presence here we don’t have the bus run over us,” said Jason Crites, president of the Cornwall Professional Firefighters Association. “It’s just not helpful.”

The firefighters may have missed their intended target, though.

MacDonald was absent from Monday’s council meeting. Acting-mayor Brock Frost suggested MacDonald had been involved in a traffic accident prior to the meeting and could not attend.

MacDonald has railed against the skyrocketing costs of emergency services in Cornwall throughout the budget process.

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