Ruling delays layoffs of 35 North Las Vegas firefighters

A judge's order has temporarily saved the jobs of 35 North Las Vegas firefighters.

A District Court judge on Friday granted a temporary restraining order that prevents the city from laying off members of the firefighters union pending a hearing on a preliminary injunction set for Wednesday, according to court records.

The firefighters received pink slips in June. The layoffs were among more than 250 positions the City Council voted in May to slash to help bridge a $30.3 million shortfall in fiscal year 2012, which began July 1.

The city's 2012 budget was thrown into disarray earlier this month when the police union won a court decision that prohibited the city from proceeding with the layoffs of nearly 40 union members, including a dozen police officers, for at least 90 days.

The firefighters union contract, as amended earlier this year, contains language almost identical to that of the police officers union.

North Las Vegas is now scrambling to patch an $8.6 million hole in the budget that was supposed to come from those public safety cuts. Otherwise the city faces a severe financial emergency and potential takeover of its finances by the state.

Jeff Hurley, president of the International Association of Firefighters Local 1607, could not be reached for comment Sunday.

Contact reporter Lynnette Curtis at lcurtis or 702-383-0285.