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CSA Upholds PG County Paramedic Injunction

An appeal filed by Prince George’s County to vacate an injunction ordering the county to train 64 paramedics, who had their job offers rescinded days before a training class began, was denied by the Court of Special Appeals yesterday.The appeal followed a temporary restraining order issued last week by Prince George’s County Circuit Court Judge C. Philip Nichols. The order directed the county’s fire department to train all 128 paramedics, including those whose job offers had been withdrawn.“Firefighter applicants are very pleased that the Court of Special Appeals denied the county’s effort to vacate the judgment,” said attorney Jay P. Holland in a news release. Holland represents 12 paramedics who filed a class-action lawsuit charging the county with breach of contract and negligent misrepresentation.The 64 paramedics had their job offers yanked just two weeks after receiving letters that incorrectly implied they had passed all necessary tests and would be offered slots in the class. They had already accepted jobs with the county, most had left their previous jobs and many had made new living arrangements.In his order, Nichols wrote that the “county’s actions are disingenuous, at best, and the plaintiffs should not be subject to this sort of callousness and irresponsibility on the part of the county. Frankly, this case shocks our conscience.”Hollands said the county is spending “millions” of dollars in overtime because of a firefighter shortage. “They are now paying nearly a hundred thousand dollars a week to have these 128 applicants sitting idle,” Hollands added. “The county should train these firefighters and get them into the firehouses to protect the public.”