Lackawanna Fire Chief Ralph Galanti recommended that the city purchase a new pumper for $439,201.
City officials told him they did not have enough money.
"There is a concern regarding appropriations," said Carolyn Nicometo, city comptroller. "Our cash is committed to other projects contracted up to 2018."
An unexpected expense involved the increase in recycling costs, estimated at $25,000 a month, said Anthony DeSantis, commissioner of public works. That would lead to a $200,000 expense, he said.
Galanti said the pumper would take Empire Apparatus of Niagara Falls a year to build.
Second Ward Councilwoman Annette Iafallo summed up the city's plight Monday.
"It would be fiscally irresponsible to vote on this right now," Iafallo said. Councilmen Kevin Surdyke and Joseph Jerge agreed, and the council voted unanimously to receive and file the correspondence.