CHUCK392 - it's getting harder to find volunteers but we all want the protection. Volunteers deserve to be rewarded and there needs to be some incentive for participation.
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I'm sort of torn on this, since it could help recruitment, but I wouldn't expect something like that for volunteering (although as I said I haven't been in the fire service for years.)
joew - Volunteer firefighters are covered by workers' compensation if they get hurt in the line of duty.
PhilJulian - I would disagree with a tax exemption. I served in my department for around 16 years and was very active - recognized as responding to the most, or second most, calls of any member for almost all the years I served. I expected no compensation, yet spent a lot of my own money in the course of my service. Came very close to being killed (literally within inches)during one fire call.
I agree DS in that those people have a passion for wanting to serve. I would hope that screening would be able to sort out those who have the well being of the public at heart as opposed to those who want only the exemptions. Thanks for your service!
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I don't disagree, I was in the local fire service for close to 15 years when a back injury ended it.
Some sort of tax credit might go a long way to help with staffing our volunteer departments which more and more are having trouble getting people involved.
It's a tough call, since those who serve do so because they want to and not because they want something out of it, and introducing people who only want a tax credit could result in many unforeseen negative effects within these companies.
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I agree that there would have to be controls and requirements however those men and women who respond at any hour,and any day deserve those exemptions!
I wouldn't say totally exempt, although they should get a deduction from any property taxes since it's their volunteer service that saves the taxpayer to expense of having a paid department.
Of course something like that would be widely open to abuse unless strict controls were placed on activity requirements, and of course this would create a whole new bureaucracy.
I agree with Phil and have said it before,those volunteer firefighters should be exempt from property taxes AND state and local taxes!Putting your life on the line for others deserves that!
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Actually "ObserverObserver" that was reported however what you missed is who will pay should any of those heroes be injured or worse!
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Not sure who disagrees with my comment, but I am curious as to why?
Chautauqua County has many different type of departments. Some like Dunkirk entities of their local government while others are in effect a private company that contracts with said local government (such as I believe East & West Dunkirk fire does.)
If they are in fact private incorporated companies then the Town can set requirements in the contract for how portions of it are spent, and for which the company needs to account for, but in general that is all. And of course money raise for the social fund is no one outside the fire company's business.
To report or not to report the finances??? Because of misconceptions, & poor paper work, I think there should be accountably. Maybe not at every Town meeting, but at least every couple of months. Human nature being what it is, it would at least keep some from getting in to a habit that may be hard to break. Oversight is good, much better than "hindsight" !!
Volunteer firemen are a blessing and they should be compensated in other ways to encourage their participation. For example, why not make them exewmpt from local property taxes? It would be a lot cheaper than paying huge salaries like we do in Dunkirk.
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For hadenough: "Fire companies and other emergency crews that depend on volunteers to respond to calls can now officially breathe a sign of relief. The final regulations for implementing the employer responsibility provisions under the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act released on Monday make it official: bonafide volunteers for a government or tax-exempt entity are exempted from being counted as full-time employees." Fox News probably forgot to report that.
"hadenough" I think that another of the Obama illegal and unconstitutional changes to the law made yesterday may have delayed that until 2016?
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According to the Affordable care act, commonly known as Obama care the municipalities will have to provide insurance to the volunteers. Now I do not know the exact number of volunteers but the cost will be staggering. Is the city prepared for this expense? I am sure it is. That's enough good news for now.
It depends, if they are owned by the local government yes, but independent, such as those in the Town of Dunkirk, then no.
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yes so the taxpayer isn't getting hosed.
PO Box 391 , Dunkirk, NY 14048-0391 | 716-366-3000