House Bill 269  – would provide an exemption from the Realty Transfer Tax (RTT) for the transfer of real estate from the surviving spouse or minor child of a first responder, within five years of the first responder’s death.

  House Bill 732 – would provide an exemption from the RTT for the transfer of real estate to or by a volunteer emergency medical services (EMS) company, volunteer fire company, or volunteer rescue company. NOW ACT 66 of 2020.

  House Bill 1448 – would transform the Volunteer Loan Assistance Program (VLAP) into an Emergency Responder Loan Assistance Program. Volunteer, career, and combination agencies that provide fire, ambulance, or rescue squad services would have access to low-interest loans that will help these agencies to purchase, modernize, repair, and refurbish facilities, equipment, and reporting software, as well as to refinance debt.

  House Bill 1459 – would create the Emergency Responder Mental Wellness and Stress Management Program for first responders, including 911 dispatchers and coroners. Funding comes from increasing the fine for traffic violations from $10 to $20 and Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) fines from $25 to $50. (last increases were more than 20 years ago).  NOW ACT 69 of 2020.

  House Bill 1673 – would allow volunteer fire relief money to be used for retention of existing volunteer members and providing incentives for recruiting new volunteer firefighters. One example is the Length of Service Award Program (LOSAP), a system established to provide tax-deferred income benefits to active volunteer members of a fire service. Another is for the assistance and protection of volunteer firefighters in order to provide necessary training and life-preserving safeguards. 

  House Bill 1705 - would give school districts the option of enacting a tax credit against the property tax liability of active volunteers of a fire or EMS company.  

  House Bill 1758 – would add volunteer fire and EMS companies to the list of entities that receive automatically receive municipal police accident reports, thereby exempting them from the $22 per copy fee. 

  House Bill 1773 - would create the Tuition Assistance for Active Volunteers Program for our first responders. An active member of a volunteer fire company or EMS agency who attends an approved institution of higher learning will be eligible to receive tuition assistance. Program is modeled after the PA National Guard education assistance program. 

  House Bill 1780 – would exempt volunteer fire, rescue and ambulance companies from the Right-to-Know Law (RTK). Responding to RTK requests consume valuable time and resources. Any funding or assistance that is provided to our emergency services organizations through local or state government entities is naturally an open record under other various state and municipal codes that currently require reporting and documentation.

  House Bill 1786 – would create the First Responder Loan Forgiveness Program for indebted college graduates who are active members of an emergency medical services agency, volunteer fire company, or volunteer rescue company. Up to $16,000 of the graduate’s loans would be forgiven after four years of service.

  House Bill 1816 – would increase by 10% the maximum loans limits available to volunteer fire companies and emergency medical services through the Volunteer Loan Assistance Program (VLAP).  

  House Bill 1819  – would reform the Office of the State Fire Commissioner by creating a State Fire Commission while consolidating and expanding the duties under the Office’s authority.

  House Bill 1834  – would re-authorize the Fire and EMS Grant Program and expand eligible uses to include recruitment and retention. This money could be put toward efforts such as a volunteer firefighter length of service award and programs to attract junior firefighters to the volunteer ranks. Bill was amended in committee to expand the authorized use of grant funding by allowing fire companies to bank for up to five years grant money to be used for purchases or construction of a new facility. 

  House Bill 1838  – would increase the funding available through the Emergency Medical Services Operating Fund (EMSOF) for our EMS delivery system by increasing surcharges are assessed upon moving violations and DUI convictions.

  House Bill 1839 – would give counties the option of providing a property tax credit to qualified active volunteers to be applied against an active volunteer’s property tax liability. 

  House Bill 1869  – would grant staffing waivers on a case-by-case basis for Basic Life Support (BLS) ambulances in 6th through 8th class counties.  Current law requires that a BLS ambulance be staffed at a minimum with at least one individual who is certified as an emergency medical responder or higher and one who is licensed as an EMT. NOW ACT 17 of 2020.

  Senate Bill 146 – would make online training more readily available to current and prospective first responders. NOW Act 106 of 2019.

   Senate Bill 1122 – would establish the COVID-19 Crisis Fire Company and Emergency Medical Services Grant Program to provide an additional $50 million in funding for first responders. NOW ACT 26 OF 2020

  House Resolution 462 - October 2019 as “Fire Prevention Month” and recognizing the week of October 6 through 12, 2019, as “National Fire Prevention Week”  

 = passed in PA House