WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — Wilmington officials say the city has been awarded a federal grant to hire firefighters and help reduce a projected deficit in the next fiscal year.

The $1.7 million grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency would pay firefighters’ salaries for the next two years. It would fill five vacant positions, and pay the salary of eight firefighters who were laid off but have since filled the jobs of others who left the department.

The grant would also reduce the department’s expenditures during the coming budget year by about $500,000.

The city Council must still vote on whether to accept the grant.

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