Twelve new firefighters were added to the city's fire department this week.
The 12 new hires, in alphabetical order, are Patrick Casey, Michael Curtis, Timothy Donovan, Jason Dorant, Barry Hamilton, Michael Jefferson, Michael Khoury, Shaun Lyons, Brian MacMullin, Paul Moreira, Jocelyn Velney, and Fernando Viveiros.
Each new firefighter was sworn in at Thursday's Board of Aldermen meeting by City Clerk John Long, but will need to complete academy training before entering full-time employment with the fire department. The training will begin Jan. 5 at the Massachusetts Firefighting Academy in Stow. Trainees are expected to graduate in March.
Ward 1 Alderman Bill Roche said most of the new hires were from Somerville.
The new hires were made possible by an $843,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
"The new personnel give us the flexibility to add a full-time pumper unit and to bring Engine 4 back on line on a part-time basis," said Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone. Eight more firefighters are expected to be added to the force by 2009, according to city officials.
In another matter, aldermen also promoted four veteran firefighters Thursday.
Wallace Forrest was promoted to captain, and John Colbert, Vincent Lampley, and Thomas Tierney were promoted to lieutenant.
"I've had the pleasure of working with four dedicated, exceptional officers who I am proud to be able to promote to captain and lieutenant. Their hard work has led to an exceptional department, and I congratulate them on their well-earned promotions," said Fire Chief Kevin Kelleher.