The Minneapolis City Council voted Friday morning to apply for a federal grant of just more than $1 million that will be used to rehire six recently laid-off firefighters.
The fire department let the six firefighters go because it couldn't afford to pay their salaries. The federal money would allow the city to fund the firefighters' salaries and benefits for two years.
Under the terms of the so-called SAFER grant the city will not be required to match the dollar amount. City officials say they are also working to find ways to keep paying for the firefighters after the grant expires.
Department officials say they should know by the end of September if the city will receive the grant.
In a related action, the council also voted to spend nearly $500,000 to re-hire a dozen police officers in training who were laid off a few years ago. That money will come from a police department budget surplus.