Senate Passes Bills To Benefit Firefighters And Fire Safety

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The New York State Senate recently passed multiple bills that will benefit firefighters and the community. Among the main bills passed was legislation written by Senator Jim Gaughran, who represents Plainview. His bill will provide clarification on additional information and proof that can be submitted to determine eligibility for volunteer firefighter enhanced cancer disability benefits.

“Volunteer firefighters who contract cancer in the line of duty deserve full benefits and health care protections,” said Gaughran. “If their department is unable to verify the firefighter’s membership eligibility through no fault by the firefighter, we must ensure these brave first responders are still provided comprehensive coverage. This bill will close loopholes, which have inadvertently excluded volunteer firefighters from the coverage they’re entitled to.”

Other beneficial bills for firefighters that were passed include legislation by Senator Julia Salazar that will authorize firefighters and law enforcement officers outside of New York City to possess and administer epinephrine, as well as legislation by Senator Brad Hoylman that will reduce the use of PFAS chemicals in firefighting activities.

The fourth bill passed, written by Senator John Brooks of Seaford, will require homeowners to be provided a cost estimate for installation of a fire sprinkler system when purchasing a newly constructed home.

“Understanding the necessity and cost of protecting your family is an essential component in the safety of your home,” said Brooks. “Sprinkler systems are very effective in both containing a fire before it spreads and reducing the overall damage that can result. As a lifelong firefighter, I have seen the difference that installed sprinklers can create in regards to damage control and loss of life. This bill will provide prospective homeowners who are planning new construction with a cost estimate for the installation of a fire sprinkler system as a means to encourage additional fire safety in their home.”

These four bills will now go to the assembly where they will be worked on and brought for vote. If passed, they will go to the governor to sign.

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