Saratoga County, NY – New York State Senator Daphne Jordan (R,C,I-Halfmoon) and New York State Senator Jim Tedisco (R,C-Glenville) today proudly announced the appointment of Clifton Park Fire Chief Arthur “Art” Hunsinger to serve on the New York State Volunteer Firefighter Recruitment and Retention Task Force. Senators Jordan and Tedisco submitted Chief Hunsinger’s name, impeccable public safety credentials, and outstanding public service record to Senate Republican Leader Robert Ortt as the Senate Republican Conference’s appointee to the State Task Force.
Established under Chapter 258 of the Laws of 2020, the New York State Volunteer Firefighter Recruitment and Retention Task Force is required to issue a report to the Governor and State Legislature on Firefighter 1 training, and all other firefighter training offered by the Office of Fire Prevention and Control. The Task Force examines delivery methods to enhance and streamline training, including the use of distance learning, utilization of community colleges, BOCES, or state-accredited high schools to train firefighters, and the creation of pilot programs within community colleges or BOCES that will offer Firefighter 1 Certification upon completion.
The state law required the New York State Volunteer Firefighter Recruitment and Retention Task Force to examine the creation of “a dedicated bureau within the Office of Fire Prevention and Control responsible for recruitment and retention of volunteer firefighters, tax incentives, and volunteer firefighter benefits currently provided, and recommendations as to these or new programs, analysis of current recruitment and retention programs successfully being utilized by other states and recommendations as to the adoption of similar programs in New York.” Also, the identification of incentives to assist in the recruitment of volunteer firefighters from under-represented and at-risk populations, and making related provisions, are part of the Task Force’s purview.
Chief Hunsinger’s public safety background, credentials, and service record are impeccable, For the past 40 years, Mr. Hunsinger served as a volunteer firefighter in the Clifton Park Fire Department where he steadily rose through the ranks. Mr. Hunsinger served as Past Chief of the Department serving from 2003-2007, and 2015-2017, respectively. Chief Hunsinger was elected Fire Commissioner in 2019 and started serving a five-year term in January 2020. A member of the Saratoga County Fire Advisory Board, Chief Hunsinger represents the Town of Halfmoon serving as past chairman and presently serves as Chair of the Recruitment and Retention and Radio Committees on the Board, respectively.
Chief Hunsinger is dedicated to the recruitment and training of fire service members who wish to protect and serve their community. Chief Hunsinger volunteered for the Clifton Park-Halfmoon Ambulance as an EMT for over 10 years and is a life member. Chief Hunsinger taught for the New York State Association of Fire Chiefs regarding recruitment and media relations, as well as for other departments and organizations. Chief Hunsinger teaches Incident Command System (ICS) to schools around the region as required by the New York State Department of Education for managing a school-based incident or disaster. Chief Hunsinger is also a qualified State Fire Instructor.
“We depend on our volunteer firefighters to respond to emergencies and help to save lives and the New York State Volunteer Firefighter Recruitment and Retention Task Force aims to support that mission through sharing best practices for firefighter recruitment, training, and retention. I’m proud to join Senator Jordan in submitting Clifton Park Fire Chief Art Hunsinger as our appointee to the Task Force. Chief Hunsinger not only does an incredible job leading his department in their dedicated efforts to keep both of our Senate Districts safe, but he also is a recognized expert who is known across the state for his wealth of knowledge about the fire services. Chief Hunsinger’s deep experience will continue to benefit the residents of the 49th and 43rd Senate Districts and New Yorkers throughout the Empire State,” said Senator Jim Tedisco.
“Chief Hunsinger’s proven record of public service, his strong public safety credentials, and his faithful commitment to protecting and serving the community makes him a fantastic choice for the New York State Volunteer Firefighter Recruitment and Retention Task Force. Chief Hunsinger’s life has been dedicated to making a positive difference, expertly leading our firefighters, and helping our fire service be the best it can possibly be. I’m honored to have submitted his name for consideration and thrilled that he will serve in this important, new statewide leadership role,” Senator Daphne Jordan said.
“I am honored and humbled to have been selected to serve on the New York State Volunteer Firefighter Recruitment and Retention Task Force. I’m grateful to Senator Tedisco, Senator Jordan, and Senate Republican Leader Robert Ortt for submitting my name to represent them and the New York State Senate Republican Conference in this important public safety capacity,” said Arthur “Art” Hunsinger, Clifton Park Fire Department Chief.