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Judge refuses to block firefighting agreement, sets hearing date
Thursday, October 23, 2008 by Austin Monitor
A state district judge on Wednesday declined to issue a temporary restraining order to prevent the Austin City Council from acting on an inter-local agreement with the Westlake Fire Department during today’s Council meeting. However, the Austin Firefighters Association will be allowed to make its case against that agreement next month when Judge John Dietz holds a hearing to consider a temporary injunction against the city.
The lawyer for the firefighters argued in court that the agreement to allow Westlake Fire Department crews to cover territory that will be annexed into the City of
Deats cited a 1991 case heard before the Texas Supreme Court, Lee v. City of
“The whole purpose of the civil service act was to allow cities to have qualified personnel with permanent tenure who are above political influence…the use of an inter-local agreement in this manner will give the central city a civil service fire department, which will be surrounded by a hodge-podge of non civil service departments and volunteers,” Deats said.
Attorneys for the city argued that the contract up for consideration today is simply an extension of an existing agreement, and that
The judge agreed with that contention and did not issue a TRO. Instead, both sides will return to the courthouse on Nov. 4 to present their arguments for a temporary injunction.
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