senate Bill S4724

Establishes the volunteer firefighters and emergency medical service volunteer tuition assistance grant program

download pdf

Sponsor

Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
view actions

actions

  • 15 / Apr / 2011
    • REFERRED TO HIGHER EDUCATION
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • REFERRED TO HIGHER EDUCATION
  • 12 / Mar / 2012
    • NOTICE OF COMMITTEE CONSIDERATION - REQUESTED
  • 12 / Mar / 2012
    • COMMITTEE DISCHARGED AND COMMITTED TO RULES

Summary

Establishes the volunteer firefighters and emergency medical service volunteer tuition assistance grant program; provides that counties shall have the option to establish such program by the enactment of a local law; provides for state reimbursement to counties for fifty percent of tuition assistance costs.

do you support this bill?

Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A5148
Versions:
S4724
Legislative Cycle:
2011-2012
Current Committee:
Senate Rules
Law Section:
Education Law
Laws Affected:
Add ยง609, Ed L
Versions Introduced in Previous Legislative Cycles:
2009-2010: S2697, A6029
2007-2008: A10225

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S4724

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the education law, in relation to establishing a volunteer
firefighters and emergency medical service volunteer
tuition assistance grant
program

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
This legislation would help to address the continuing difficulty local
volunteer fire and emergency medical service (EMS) departments have
had recruiting and retaining volunteers. This difficulty is
particularly true for young people who are hard pressed to pursue
their careers and their education while volunteering for these
critically important services.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
This bill allows counties to establish a local tuition grants program
for active volunteer firefighters and EMS personnel at state operated
institutions. The grant can be for up to fifty percent of tuition
required at state operated institutions or community colleges.

This legislation also provides that, where a county has created a
tuition grants program, the state would reimburse the county at
one-half the actual tuition grant established by the county for each
eligible volunteer.

JUSTIFICATION:
During the last several years it has become increasingly difficult
for local volunteer fire and EMS departments to recruit and retain
new members. The demands on young people to meet various
responsibilities in their family and personal lives continue to grow.
Family life, career development and other demands limit people's
ability to volunteer their time. This is particularly true for
volunteer firemen and EMS personnel, who need special training in
light of the life-threatening situations they are exposed to and
confronted at any given time.

Over the last decade, the legislature has taken a variety of steps to
protect volunteers and their families.
This includes special insurance protection and retirement benefits for
these volunteers. However, these incentives lend themselves to long
tenured members and provide little, if any, incentive for young
people to become involved.

This legislation attempts to provide some direct help by focusing on
education. This should help local fire and EMS departments recruit
young people who are attending college but are willing to volunteer
their time to become part of a local firefighter or emergency medical
services organization.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
2008: S.7094/A.1194
2009: S.2697/A.6029


FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
At county option.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
This act shall take effect immediately and shall apply to academic
semesters, quarters and classroom hours beginning on or after
January 1, 2013.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  4724

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                             April 15, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen. KENNEDY -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Higher Education

AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to establishing a  volun-
  teer  firefighters  and  emergency  medical  service volunteer tuition
  assistance grant program

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. The education law is amended by adding a new section 609 to
read as follows:
  S  609. VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTERS AND EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICE VOLUNTEER
TUITION ASSISTANCE GRANT PROGRAM. 1. FOR PURPOSES OF THIS  SECTION,  THE
FOLLOWING TERMS SHALL HAVE THE FOLLOWING MEANINGS:
  A.  "VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTER" SHALL MEAN AN ACTIVE VOLUNTEER MEMBER OF A
FIRE COMPANY OF A COUNTY, A FIRE COMPANY OF  A  CITY,  TOWN  OR  VILLAGE
LOCATED  WITHIN  SUCH COUNTY, OR A FIRE DISTRICT FIRE DEPARTMENT LOCATED
WITHIN SUCH COUNTY, WHETHER OR NOT  ANY  SUCH  COMPANY  IS  INCORPORATED
UNDER ANY GENERAL OR SPECIAL LAW.
  B.  "VOLUNTEER  EMERGENCY  MEDICAL  SERVICE  PERSONNEL"  SHALL MEAN AN
ACTIVE VOLUNTEER MEMBER OF ANY EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICE AS  ESTABLISHED
WITHIN A COUNTY, TOWN, VILLAGE OR CITY OR LOCAL TAX DISTRICT, WHETHER OR
NOT ANY SUCH SERVICE IS INCORPORATED UNDER ANY GENERAL OR SPECIAL LAW.
  C. "AT LEAST A PART-TIME BASIS" SHALL MEAN ENROLLMENT FOR AT LEAST SIX
HOURS PER SEMESTER OR FOUR HOURS PER QUARTER.
  D.  "TUITION" SHALL MEAN THE TOTAL SEMESTER, QUARTER OR CLASSROOM HOUR
COST OF INSTRUCTION TO THE STUDENT AT A  STATE-OPERATED  INSTITUTION  OR
COMMUNITY COLLEGE, AS DEFINED PURSUANT TO SECTION THREE HUNDRED FIFTY OF
THIS CHAPTER, EXCLUDING MANDATORY FEES, BOOK CHARGES AND ROOM AND BOARD.
  2.  ANY COUNTY WITHIN THE STATE IS HEREBY AUTHORIZED, BY THE ENACTMENT
OF   A   LOCAL   LAW,   TO   ESTABLISH   AND   IMPLEMENT   A   VOLUNTEER
FIREFIGHTERS/EMERGENCY  MEDICAL  SERVICE  VOLUNTEER  TUITION  ASSISTANCE
GRANT   PROGRAM   TO   PROVIDE   TUITION   ASSISTANCE    TO    VOLUNTEER

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD08408-01-1

S. 4724                             2

FIREFIGHTERS/EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICE VOLUNTEERS ENROLLED ON AT LEAST A
PART-TIME  BASIS AT STATE-OPERATED INSTITUTIONS OR COMMUNITY COLLEGES AS
THOSE TERMS ARE DEFINED IN SECTION THREE HUNDRED FIFTY OF THIS  CHAPTER.
ANY  PROGRAM  ESTABLISHED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION SHALL PROVIDE TUITION
ASSISTANCE  GRANTS  TO  SUCH  VOLUNTEER  FIREFIGHTERS/EMERGENCY  MEDICAL
SERVICE  VOLUNTEERS  IN  AN  AMOUNT  UP  TO FIFTY PERCENT OF THE TUITION
REQUIRED TO BE PAID TO  SUCH  STATE-OPERATED  INSTITUTION  OR  COMMUNITY
COLLEGE BY SUCH FIREFIGHTER/EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICE VOLUNTEER.
  3.  ANY  COUNTY  WHICH  ESTABLISHES A VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTERS/EMERGENCY
MEDICAL SERVICE VOLUNTEER TUITION ASSISTANCE GRANT PROGRAM  PURSUANT  TO
THE  PROVISIONS  OF THIS SECTION SHALL BE ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FROM
THE STATE FOR ONE-HALF OF THE ACTUAL COST OF TUITION ASSISTANCE PAID  BY
SUCH  COUNTY  TO  VOLUNTEER  FIREFIGHTERS  OR  EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICE
PERSONNEL.
  S 2. This act shall take effect immediately and shall apply to academ-
ic semesters, quarters and classroom hours beginning on or after January
1, 2013.

Comments

Open Legislation comments facilitate discussion of New York State legislation. All comments are subject to moderation. Comments deemed off-topic, commercial, campaign-related, self-promotional; or that contain profanity or hate speech; or that link to sites outside of the nysenate.gov domain are not permitted, and will not be published. Comment moderation is generally performed Monday through Friday.

By contributing or voting you agree to the Terms of Participation and verify you are over 13.