Southwestern Fire Chiefs Association

Home » Legislative Resource

Legislative Resource

Upcoming Events

No upcoming events

Contact Us

Corporate HQ 405-834-9483
Sales/Service 843-697-7735

executivedirector@swd-iafc.org

The Congressional Fire Services Caucus is one of the largest caucuses in Congress. Founded by former Congressman Curt Weldon in 1987, the Caucus unites Republicans and Democrats in support of fire service legislation that benefit all first responders. Becoming a member does not require taking positions on legislation; rather Caucus members are asked to pledge support in a way that best benefits fire departments in their respective Congressional Districts.

To preserve the bipartisan spirit of the Caucus, the chairmanship rotates every two years between Republican and Democratic members. Previous chairmen include Senator Joseph Biden (DE), Senator John McCain (AZ), Senator Paul Sarbanes (MD), Senator Willaim V. Roth, Jr.(DE), Congressmen Weldon (PA), Steny Hoyer (MD), Sherwood Boehlert (NY) and Robert Andrews (NJ)

Here is a list of the representatives we currently have serving on the caucus for our Southwestern states:

Arkansas:

Louisiana:

New Mexico:

Oklahoma:

Texas:

Here are some useful tips for writing your member. Whether you elect to follow them or not, just remember that your letter is one of many received each day. The way you present your concerns will determine to a large extent the reply you receive.

  • Keep the letter brief and to the point.
  • Write on office, fire department or personal letterhead, and sign your name over your typed name at the end of your letter.
  • Write only about one issue per letter, stating your position in the first paragraph. Personal experiences are the best supporting evidence.
  • Avoid combative or argumentative language.
  • If you have met the member of Congress personally or have some connection or association beyond being a constituent, highlight it in your letter.
  • Ask the member of Congress to state his or her position in the reply.
  • Write your letter well in advance of pending congressional action to give your member of Congress the timely opportunity to make an informed decision.
  • Know your facts. Erroneous information will hurt your credibility.
  • Express your own ideas and opinions. Do not use standard phrases which often give the appearance of a form letter.
  • Do not write on impulse. Have someone review your letter for content and grammar. Show that you put some time and thought into it. You might reveal something for the first time which can heavily influence a member’s position.

Current list of senators and members of congress on the Congressional Fire Service Caucus:

If your congressman or senator is not listed on the caucus, please urge them to join. JoinCaucusSampleLetter

We recommend sending a thank you letter to our representative for serving on this very important caucus. TYCaucusSampleLetter


 

Here is a list of current legislation (taken from the CFSC website)

  • FIRE SPRINKLER INCENTIVE ACT

H.R. 3591 was introduced by Congressman Tom Reed (NY-23) on September 22, 2015.

S. 2068 was introduced by Senator Susan Collins (ME) on September 22, 2015.

Summary: The legislation amends the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to include automated fire sprinkler systems as section 179 property and classify certain automated fire sprinkler systems as 15-year property for purposes of depreciation.

  • JAMES ZADROGA 9/11 HEALTH AND COMPENSATION REAUTHORIZATION ACT

S. 928 was introduced on April 14, 2015 by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (NY).

H.R. 1786 was introduced on April 14, 2015 by Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (NY-12).

Summary: The legislation provides health care and economic compensation to those suffering from illness or injury due to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, as well as to the families of those who died since the attacks from related injuries.

  • SAFE BUILDING CODES INCENTIVE ACT

H.R. 1748 was introduced on April 13, 2015 by Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart (FL-25).

Summary: The bill provides additional funding for post-disaster grants, under a program administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, to states that adopt and enforce state-wide building codes.

  • PROTECTING VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTERS AND EMERGENCY RESPONDERS ACT

S. 420 was introduced on February 20, 2015 by Senator Pat Toomey (PA).

H.R. 2658 was introduced on June 4, 2015 by Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11).

Summary: The legislation ensures that volunteers are not counted as full-time employees under the shared responsibility requirements contained in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

  • VOLUNTEER RESPONDER INCENTIVE PROTECTION ACT

S. 609 was introduced on February 27, 2015 by Senator Charles Schumer (NY).

Summary: The legislation exempts from federal income tax any property tax benefit and up to $600 per year of any other type of benefit that a state or local unit of government provides to volunteer emergency responders as a recruitment or retention incentive.

  • VOLUNTEER EMERGENCY SERVICES RECRUITMENT AND RETENTION ACT

S. 616 was introduced on February 27, 2015 by Senator Susan Collins (ME).

H.R. 1171 was introduced on February 27, 2015 by Congressman Peter King (NY-2).

Summary: The legislation modifies the federal tax code to make it easier for fire departments and local governments to provide recruitment and retention incentive to volunteer emergency response personnel through length of service award programs (LOSAPs).

  • FEDERAL FIREFIGHTERS FAIRNESS ACT

H.R. 1035 was introduced on February 24, 2015 by Congresswoman Lois Capps (CA-24).

Summary: The legislation amends federal law to create a rebuttable presumption that heart disease, lung disease, specified cancers and infectious diseases contracted by federal firefighters are job-related and contracted in the line-of-duty for purposes of worker’s compensation and disability retirement.

  • FISCAL YEAR 2015 HOMELAND SECURITY APPROPRIATIONS ACT

H.R. 240 was introduced by Congressman Harold Rogers (KY-5) on January 9, 2015.

Summary: The bill makes appropriations for programs and activities of the Department of Homeland Security for Fiscal Year 2015.

Unsure of how the process works?  Here is a link to an indepth description of the process 

 

 

RSS News feed provided to you by SWD

  • Extending Staff Emergency Leave Policy December 17, 2017
    She expressed that her thoughts are with our UCSB community, and that UC Office of the President stands ready to offer any support it can. We want to again extend our gratitude and deepest respect to the huge numbers of firefighters, first responders, and UCPD whose service, sacrifices, and valor are ...
  • First responders chow down in West Grove December 17, 2017
    First responders chow down in West Grove ... First responders line up for turkey and all the fixings. ... And on Friday they engaged in their 16-year tradition of hosting a pre-Christmas turkey dinners gratis for all the emergency responders in the area including Chester, Delaware and New Castle counties ...
  • Police to pilot change to 111 system for mental health calls December 17, 2017
    However, police say they are not the most appropriate first responders, and last year secured $8 million from the previous government to trial a new service. In their proposal, obtained under the Official Information Act, they called for a service where a mental health worker would attends all crisis calls ...
  • Knoxville man faces first degree murder charge in father's stabbing death December 17, 2017
    Upon arrival, KCSO said deputies discovered Daniel Lynn Hillard, 65, inside the residence, suffering from multiple stab wounds. First responders pronounced the man dead at the scene. Deputies then detained the victim's son, 37-year-old John Paul Hillard, for questioning. Hillard has been charged with ...
  • First Responder Day at State & Liberty December 17, 2017
    Calling all First Responders! State & Liberty invites you to their holiday popup to experience their custom, athletic t clothing brand with dress shirts, polos and overcoats all crafted from performance fabric. A GOOD CAUSE State & Liberty will donate a portion of the day's proceeds to The Boston ...
%d bloggers like this: