Measure Calling for Fire/EMS Review Receives Final Approval

A measure introduced by Senator Randy Vulakovich calling for a comprehensive review of Pennsylvania’s volunteer fire departments and EMS organizations received final legislative approval on Wednesday (April 26).

The Senate unanimously concurred on House amendments to Senate Resolution 6, which calls for a “reboot” of Senate Resolution 60 of 2003, the comprehensive study of fire and EMS issues completed in 2004.

SR 6, as amended, calls for a 39-member commission made up of legislators, first responders and representatives from municipalities. The panel would follow up on the impact of SR 60 and study issues currently affecting first responders. The commission would then provide its recommendations to the Chairmen of the Senate and House Veterans Affairs & Emergency Preparedness Committees by June 30, 2018.

“It has been 14 years since the SR 60 study, so it is certainly time that we step back and consider the landscape as far as it pertains to Pennsylvania’s fire companies and EMS squads. Pennsylvania’s first responders certainly face many of the same challenges now as they did back then, such as the loss of volunteers and the exorbitant costs of apparatus and training,” said Senator Vulakovich, Chairman of the Senate Veterans Affairs & Emergency Preparedness Committee. “The timing is right to ‘reboot’ this process by reviewing the 23 recommendations made by the SR 60 Commission. We need to see what was accomplished and what remains to be done.”

Senator Vulakovich and his fellow chairmen of the Senate and House Veterans Affairs & Emergency Preparedness Committees held a press conference on January 23  to unveil SR 6 and discuss a 16-bill package of legislation to complement and build on previous efforts to help Pennsylvania’s first responders. Video of the press conference.

Contact:         Nate Silcox (717)        787-6538         nsilcox@pasen.gov