Millheim Fire Company
All opinions on my website are my own opinion(s) and not the opinion(s) of the Millheim Fire Company.
Cooperative agreement, 2008-07-08.pdf (Haines Township and Millheim Borough)
Draft Cooperative Agreement, 2015-11-12.docx (rejected by Municipalities, I wasted a lot of my time writing this)
In 2016 the municipalities proposed an alternate cooperative agreement.
Here is that signed document. Cooperative Agreement, signed by all 2016-11-03.pdf
Pennsylvania House Bill 1683
An Act amending Title 35 (Health and Safety) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, providing for incentives for municipal volunteers of fire companies and nonprofit emergency medical services agencies.
Below are the various drafts of the proposed legislation as it progressed through the legislature.
HB1683P4128.DOC (presented to Governor on 14 Nov 16 for signature)
This legislation was signed into law by the Governor Tom Wolfe on November 21st, 2016 with an effective date 60 days following and would allow volunteer ambulance and fire personnel to receive a rebate on their local earned income tax and a rebate of of to 20% of their personal residence real estate tax. This rebate would not be applicable to schools, county, state or federal taxes although technically schools are now a municipality unto themselves in accordance with decisions of the state supreme court.
This legislation was enacted as ACT 172 of 2016 by the Pennsylvania state legislature.
Here is the enacted legislation. 2016 Act 172 - PA General Assembly.pdf
I made this information known to the Penn Township board of supervisors at the November 2016 regular meeting as to the enactment of the legislation and the then pending governor's signature of the legislation. They were unaware up until that time of the legislation and pending governor's signature.
At an October 2017 informational meeting held at the Penns Valley EMS building to discuss problems with the local Penns Valley Emergency Medical services and their funding (lack thereof) issue as well as lack of volunteers to man the equipment and respond to calls for ambulance services with representatives of every Penns Valley municipality represented, upon my polling of the assembled municipal officials if they had enacted an enabling local resolution or ordinance, not a single municipality has passed an enabling ordinance (Townships) or resolution (Boroughs), nor did any of them indicate that they intended to even consider it, let alone adopt.
My recommendation to all my fellow volunteers would be January 1, 2018 all fire and ambulance personnel will be officially retired and the individual municipalities will assume all emergency response duties. So get ready for a 40 fold tax increase to pay for replacing your/our volunteers emergency responders.
On March 22nd, 2019 upon my telephone inquiry to the Penn Township, Centre County municipal secretary as to the procedure to request (make application) to the Township for the rebate that was authorized by the Township in accordance with the enabling state legislation I was informed that I could not request the rebate as the supervisors had not passed an enabling ordinance. When the question as to why they had not done so, the answer given was that it would be too much work for the Township, cost the Township too much money and it was not worth it as well as there are only a couple residents of the township that are volunteer emergency responders.
Below is some reference information that I have gathered.
PA Report on the Volunteer Emergency Services, Fire, Rescue and EMS
95-page legislative study report released Wednesday November 28,2018 warns that Pennsylvania's fire and rescue services face a crisis, saying the number of volunteers continues to fall amid funding needs and training challenges. The report said there were about 300,000 volunteer firefighters in the state in the 1970s, a number that's fallen to about 38,000 currently.
The report also discusses re-instituting laws requiring home sprinkler system in new homes as a way to save lives and property. The law was shelved because builders claimed that the requirement was cost prohibitive to new home owners and that the builders would lose money.
Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Legal Opinion
As there were public allegations made that I was violating Pennsylvania State law or Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board regulation by posting membership applications in the Millheim Fireman's Club on the Millheim Fire Company website I researched and could find no reference which would substantiate that allegation. I followed up with an inquiry to the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board legal department and they have made the determination that confirms that the allegation was unsubstantiated. See the legal opinion by clicking on the link below.