Legislative Wrap Up to Date
It’s unknown if the Legislature will come back into session. Bills will continue to be introduced as we proceed toward this year’s elections.
Fire Service Wrap Up of the Session to Date: 2020 wrap up
AFDSNY Cancels Annual Meeting and Expo in Niagara Falls
After extensive consideration and discussion, the Board of Directors of the Association of Fire Districts of the State of New York has determined that the 2020 Annual Meeting/Leadership Summit & Vendor Expo is hereby cancelled. We have worked closely with the Conference & Event Center at Niagara Falls as well as the Sheraton and have determined that the current health concerns and gathering restrictions in place due to COVID-19 prohibits us from moving forward with this event for 2020.
Our Program Committee and Staff have been working on a Virtual Alternative! A Fall/Winter Educational series, “Today’s Challenge is Tomorrow’s Opportunity” Moving Fire Districts forward in the age of COVID-19. Watch your email for registration information coming soon.
If you have already registered for Niagara Falls, the Association will be sending out full refunds by the end of August. If you you made a hotel reservation using the link provided in your confirmation email, the Sheraton Hotel will automatically cancel your reservation. If you did not use the link provided you will need to contact the Hotel directly do cancel your reservation.
Along with our Educational Series we will also be opening a Virtual Adventure Vendor Expo on our website. Our Expo will be open to the public from the front page of our website, it will remain open until March 2021! So, watch for updates and come check out our VENDORS!
The health and safety of our Members, Vendors, Directors, Officers and Staff are of the utmost importance to us. We look forward to seeing everyone at our 2021 Annual Meeting / Leadership Summit & Vendor Expo at the Turning Stone Resort & Casino in May of 2021. Until then we wish everyone good health and safety.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact us at 800-520-9594
Several Updates To Legislation See Scorecard
Legislation that affects Fire Districts, several new bills you need to know about!! Keeps tabs, more to come.
Tax Cap Below 2% for 2021
Property tax levy growth for local governments with fiscal years closing Dec. 31 will be capped at 1.56 percent for 2021, according to State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. This figure affects tax cap calculations for all counties, towns, fire districts, 44 cities and 11 villages.
“The pandemic and the fiscal uncertainties municipalities are facing add to the challenge of adhering to the tax cap,” DiNapoli said. “At the same time the levy growth rate is dropping, both revenues and spending could deviate significantly from what was planned. Local governments must closely monitor their budgets to ensure they are balanced and that they have cash on hand.”
The tax cap, which first applied to local governments and school districts in 2012, limits annual tax levy increases to the lesser of the rate of inflation or 2 percent with certain exceptions, including a provision that allows municipalities to override it. The cap is just one of many fiscal pressures facing local governments during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 1.56 percent allowable levy growth factor for the 2021 fiscal year is the first-time municipalities with a fiscal year ending on Dec. 31 had their levy growth capped at less than 2 percent in three years. Levy growth was capped at 2 percent for these municipalities due to inflation above 2 percent in recent years.
The allowable growth factor for 2021 will be 1.0156 for fire districts.
Looking for Members to Return
- The Capital Area can appreciate that it has been a very distracting year and we would like to remind some of our usual members that their dues have not been sent in yet; East Glenville #3, Elsmere, Glenville #5, Halfmoon FD #1, Hoosic Falls Joint Fire Dist., Perth, & Rotterdam #6. We would like to see you join for 2020.
State Fire Training to Resume
- Bill Davis Deputy State Fire Administrator announced on behalf of State Fire Administrator Nerney, “I’m pleased to announce that we are ready to begin regional training on a limited basis. Counties will be contacted by OFPC staff in the coming days to begin the planning process. The policies and procedures that we have all become familiar with will need to be in place for county level training to be conducted. Our initial focus will be to complete those courses that were postponed due to NY PAUSE. Class size along with other engineering controls will dictate the rate of completion as some classes my need to be split as a result of distancing requirements. As a result, course offerings for the remainder 2020 may be limited and may not reflect what had been previously planned for each county. As always our office will continue an open dialogue and work with each county to the greatest extent possible to meet their 2020 training needs.”
The CoVid LOSAP Amendment has been Signed Into Law
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1 amends General Municipal Law § 217 relation to Length of Service Award Programs ("LOSAP's") in order to address the impact of the COVID 19 crisis on the ability of volunteer firefighter participants to achieve performance points under the program point system in light of changes to emergency response protocols and the cancellation of activ- ities for which points can be earned. Adds a new subparagraph (q) to address developments in how volunteer fire departments respond to emergencies in order to limit certain responses for reasons of safety and efficiency. Makes subsequent amend- ments to GML 219-e and 219-m, to allow volunteer ambulance workers to achieve performance points under the program.
Coffee With the Commissioners
Next opportunity will be on Saturday July 18th at 9am Join Director Dave Denniston, Attorney Joe Frank and Past President Tom Rinaldi What would you like to talk about, questions welcome.
Web Based Commissioner Training for 2020
Mandatory commissioner training for 2020 has been canceled at all on-site locations but will be available via Webinar by the State Association. Watch the State Website for dates and times. Four Attorneys teach this 6 hour course covering the subjects as required by the State Comptroller’s Office and with the web based format, you will be able to ask questions. This will be a certificate course for all attendees. If you registered for an on-site course you will be eligible for a refund if you take the Web Based Course.
The State Association will be offering a web-based Commissioner’s training course to fulfill the legal requirements of OFC. Each class will have two (2) parts, a part A and a part B, and two options when to take each part, you choose as long as you complete a Part A and a Part B, you will be issued your certificate.
- Option 1 Part A Wednesday June 17th from 6:30PM to 9:30PM with Attorneys Joe Frank and Frank Simeone
- Option 2 Part A Saturday June 20th from 8:30AM to 11:30AM with Attorneys Bill Glass and Joe Frank
- Option 1 Part B Thursday June 18th from 6:30PM to 9:30PM with Attorneys Greg Serio and Ray DiRaddo
- Option 2 Part B Saturday June 27th from 8:30AM to 11:30AM with Attorneys Ray DiRaddo and Peter Weishaar
NOTE: YOU MUST ATTEND AND COMPLETE PART A & PART B TO OBTAIN A CERTIFICATE
TO REGISTER GO TO THE FOLLOWING WEBSITE:
Fire Service Legislation Included in Budget Bill
Items of interest to the Fire Service in the Budget Bill signed by the Governor
- The Heart and Lung provisions of the VFBL will be extended until 2025.
- Amendment to the Vehicle and Traffic Law to allow amber and blue lights on safety service patrol vehicles when engaged in hazardous operations in conjunction with amber lights.
- Amendments to the 205cc Cancer Disability Benefits: removing the language re: physical examination upon entering and replacing it with simply subsequent to having passed a physical exam with failed to reveal evidence of cancer, plus in place of the 5 fit tests a firefighter can present training or certification records, health care provider records, internal fire department records or any combination of official documents capable of evidencing that the firefighter meets the requirements of this section.
- For services and expenses related to suicide prevention efforts for veterans, first responders, law enforcement and corrections officers; 1,000,000.
LOSAP Amendment Makes Adjustments for CoVid19
LOSAP Amendment GML §217 & Makes subsequent amendments to GML 219-e and 219-m, to allow volunteer ambulance workers to achieve performance points under the program.
(p) For purposes of determining total points earned for a calendar year in which a state disaster emergency, as defined in section twenty of the executive law, has been declared pursuant to executive order number two hundred two of two thousand twenty, as amended, to address the outbreak of novel coronavirus, COV/D-19, an active volunteer firefighter service award program may provide for the crediting of up to five additional points per month, prorated for periods of less than one month, to each ·active volunteer firefighter for each month that special emergency response rules were in place restricting firefighter responses to emergency responses and/or restricting the holding of activities for which points could be earned due to guidelines related to the state disaster emergency. A political subdivision electing to provide the additional points authorized under this subdivision shall adopt a resolution by April thirtieth, two thousand twenty-one determining the number of additional points to be credited per month, provided that any additional points credited pursuant to this subdivision shall be in addition to any other points earned pursuant to this section during the state , disaster emergency.
The Most Recent Legislative Scorecard
The most recent Legislative Scorecard for May 25th.
Open the 2020 May Scorecard with this link: 2020 Scorecard May 25