Issues of United Concern
New York State Fire Service Alliance
2021 Legislative Agenda
ON December 5, 2020, the NYS Fire Service Alliance met for the purpose of developing the list of legislative priorities for the 2021 legislative session. All of the major fire service organizations were represented, and the following is a list of agreed upon priority initiatives:
Issues of United Concern
- EMS Cost Recovery: Provides that authorities having control of a fire department or fire company which provides emergency medical services may establish fees and charges for services. This previously proposed initiative (S-3685-A/A-1778-A), was passed in the Senate during the last session but difficulties encountered in lobbying for its passage in the Assembly. As a result of on-going discussions with the different entities it is felt that 2021 may be the year for passage.
- VFBL Temporary Total Disability Increase [S-4631/A-5895] in an attempt to achieve parity with worker’s compensation payments.
- Upholstered Furniture [S-6512/ A-6260-A]) support legislative efforts to remove carcinogenic chemical retardants and materials from upholstered furniture sold in New York State.
Support legislative initiatives in support of enforcement of building fire and safety code violations:
- Amending LOSAP Point System: Relates to allowing for a program sponsor to amend a point system as part of a service award program
- amending the executive law, in relation to subjecting owners who knew or should have known about an alteration in violation of the uniform code to a civil penalty
- amending the executive law, in relation to expanding remedies for violations of New York state uniform fire prevention and building code and
- create penalties on building owners of up to $7,500 for violations of the uniform fire prevention and building code that impede egress during a fire or other emergency evacuation.
Additional legislative initiatives endorsed by AFDSNY that would be supportive of studying are:
- Support and work with the New York Building Officials Conference in their efforts to educate the Legislature on the many building code related bills that were introduced in 2020
- Actively support allowing residential fire sprinklers to remain in the New York edition of the ICC Residential Building Code.
- Allowing Stipends for volunteer firefighters while preserving VFBL benefits
- Amendment of General Municipal Law §209-l in order to provide an exception from volunteer firefighter hearing rights for termination of probationary firefighters failing to meet the requirement of their probationary period
- Promote legislation that updates various laws to ensure volunteer firefighters are duly elected or approved members of their respective companies
- Income Tax relief for volunteer firefighters
- Enhanced real property tax relief for volunteer firefighters
- Amendment of Scaffold Laws and raise the threshold exemption level of the Wicks Law to bring down costs of public construction for local governments.
- Providing Not for Profit electric demand rates for fire districts and fire departments to bring down power costs for local government.
- Fire hydrant rental charge cost reduction or elimination.
The orders in which these proposals are presented are not relative to their importance.2021 Issues of United Concern
- Support use of sprinklers in all structures by supporting the unmodified IRC (International Residential Code) which requires Residential Fire Sprinkler. Also support the most current adoption of the IBC (International Building Code) and IFC (International Fire Code) as well since all aspects of fire protection are critical in all buildings.
- Restoration of the jury exemption for volunteer firefighters
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