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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session


Posted: November 5, 2015 11:21 AM
From: Senator Patrick J. Stefano
To: All Senate members
Subject: Firefighter Relief Package

In the near future, I plan to introduce two bills that will provide financial relief to firefighters in the Commonwealth.

The first bill will amend the tax reform code to exempt firefighters from the sales and use tax when purchasing protective equipment and accessory communications equipment using their own personal funds. The cost of a firefighter’s protective equipment alone can cost them up to $2,500 out of pocket. Since many of these individuals volunteer their time to protect our community, I believe we should do whatever we can to make their jobs easier and more affordable.

The second bill I plan to introduce will make it easier for firefighters and other volunteer rescue organizations to utilize Special Occasion Liquor Permits for their fundraising efforts. In recent years, Pennsylvania has seen a steady decrease in the number of volunteer firefighters serving in the Commonwealth. Between mandated training hours, the cost of gear and equipment, and the countless volunteer hours required to be a firefighter, we should work to provide these organizations and other volunteer rescue organizations with the ability to effectively fundraise to meet their collective needs. By amending Section 408.4(i) of the Liquor Code to increase the flexibility of Special Occasion Permits for Volunteer Fire Companies, Ambulance Companies, or Rescue Squads, we can better serve those who sacrifice their time and safety to serve us.

I hope you will join me in co-sponsoring these important pieces of legislation. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the above information, please contact Mark Fetzko of my office.

Document #1

Introduced as SB1127

Description: Sales and Use Tax Exemption for the Purchase of Firefighting Equipment

Document #2

Introduced as SB1126

Description: Special Occasion Liquor Permits for Firefighters and Volunteer Rescue Organizations