Two Denton City Council candidates, Joey Hawkins, who is running for District 4, and District 1 incumbent Kevin Roden, earned the endorsement of the Denton Firefighters Association Monday night, which means $500 in campaign contributions will be offered to those two candidates along with in-kind help with the campaign.
Michael Holdsclaw, chairman of the association’s political action committee, said the group’s vote not to support the incumbents Dalton Gregory, for District 2, and Jim Engelbrecht, for District 3, was related to reduced staffing on fire trucks. The City Council agreed about two years ago to dispatch trucks with three firefighters instead of four, a cost-saving move that firefighters say can affect their safety on the job.
The association also declined to endorse candidates last year.
“We’re in that same position with the incumbents this year,” Holdsclaw said.
Overall, the group was looking for key responses to issues that affect the firefighters, Holdsclaw said.
The vote came late Monday night, after a public forum with all the candidates at the Central Fire Station. In addition to staffing, the firefighters asked questions about the continuation of the meet-and-confer bargaining agreements and finishing construction of new training facility.