Note: A copy of the Sept. 2022 email sent to the Harrisburg NAACP Environmental Committee follows. Sentence providing the draft script was modified for clarity and from a link to a .pdf file.
To answer your question, <Redacted>: I've seen no movement on HB1178 yet. Rep. Jerry Knowles (Schuylkill, Berks, Carbon) introduced the bill, an amendment, earlier this month. I am, however, following its development via legis.state.pa.us.
For those who might read the blog version of this newsletter, I shared my [tentative] support for HB1178 during the September branch meeting. The bill would maximize funding for collaborating or merging fire companies in Pennsylvania.
Currently, those companies that merge or collaborate experience reduced funding after year 10 of a grant. For instance, three small fire companies might have a combined grant of $30,000. After year 10, the grant is reduced to $10,000 because the companies are then treated as one unit for the purposes of funding,
Ironically, companies might merge or collaborate in an effort to meet the shortfall in reduced funding and share in the cost of necessary equipment i.e. a new fire truck, which can cost up to $1 million. (Source: Min Xian, Spotlight PA, Aug. 2022)
Over 96% of fire companies in Pennsylvania are voluntary, one of the five highest rates in the country. So keeping them funded, staffed, and operational is vital. With respect to the City of Harrisburg, I think it'll reduce the likelihood of smaller companies in surrounding townships and boroughs from seeking the well-staffed and salaried Harrisburg Bureau of Fire as go-to assistance. That way, the Harrisburg Bureau of Fire can focus on what I presume for the densely populated city is a higher incidence of residential fires at greater risk for multi-structure damage, loss of life, and the displacement of residents and families.
I'll finalize and email you a script in support of HB1178 by Oct. 9, which is Fire Prevention Day, according to Fireboy to the Rescue! The book is one of several referenced for the script on fire safety and prevention. Aside from a message I'll seek from Chief Enterline of the Harrisburg Bureau of Fire, the script should be good as ready in October.
In the meantime, Draft 4 is available for download at your own risk below:
Chair | Environmental Committee
The founding Environmental Committee of the Harrisburg NAACP popularizes awareness for fire safety & prevention in the City of Harrisburg. Upon its formal conception in March 2021, the Committee has been developing a free educational product for young learners about non-arson house fires.
Would you like to join the Harrisburg NAACP and help shape the Environmental Committee, or another committee? Contact the Greater Harrisburg Area NAACP at hbgnaacp.com, its first website in 5 years.
Related: Environmental Committee: Cartoon, I (May 2022)
Related: Environmental Committee: Intro (1/2 Jun. 2021)
Related: Environmental Committee: Attempt to Volunteer with GHTU (Jul. 2021)
Related: Environmental Committee: Attempt to Volunteer with GHTU, II (Aug. 2021)
Related: Environmental Committee: Proposal on Harrisburg Fire Safety, Prevention (Mar. 2021)