ASSEMBLY, No. 2786
STATE OF NEW JERSEY
INTRODUCED MARCH 3, 1997
By Assemblymen KELLY and Zisa
An Act concerning the training of certain firefighters, supplementing chapter 14 of Title 40A of the New Jersey Statutes, and making an appropriation.
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. Any person appointed after the effective date of this act to a Firefighter I or similar title, for career service as a paid member of a paid or part-paid fire department or force or of a fire district maintained and controlled by a board of fire commissioners and supported by the municipal taxpayers, shall be required to satisfactorily complete a basic training program 1[formulated or]1 approved by the Division of Fire Safety in the Department of Community Affairs as a prerequisite for assignment to suppression or rescue duty.
Regulations promulgated pursuant to this act specifying the curriculum of the training program shall be primarily based on 1[Standard 1001, "Fire Fighter Professional Qualifications," established by the National Fire Protection Association,] standards set forth in chapter 18C of Title Five of the New Jersey Administrative Code1 or any 1[other] recognized1 national standard 1[, or both,] 1 which may be adopted by reference. 1Regulations adopted by reference may be modified as deemed necessary by the Commissioner of Community Affairs.1 A municipality or fire district shall provide the fire fighter with the opportunity to participate in the program.
The training program shall:
a. Consist of a minimum of 84 hours of instruction over a minimum period of weeks to be established by rule and regulation;
b. Utilize a curriculum which shall provide one-time initial training;
c. Take place at central locations in the State, including county fire academies or State facilities;
d. Require that the fire fighter either pass or fail the program within one year of appointment. If the person fails one or more modules of the program, he shall retake the failed module and pass at the appropriate level of performance; and
e. Be available to 1, but not mandatory for,1 volunteer fire fighters 1[at their own expense]1.
2. Expenses incurred in furnishing the programs in fire fighting to fire fighters referred to in section 1 of this act that are directly attributable to training1[, including regular compensation and the furnishing of meals and lodging at or near a training facility,]1 shall be 1annually1 reimbursed by the 1[State. Reasonable travel expenses incurred by the fire fighter shall also be paid by the State, but only if the travel expense would not otherwise be incurred by the fire fighter in the regular course of his employment] Division of Fire Safety in an amount not to exceed $500,000 in any fiscal year1.
3. The Commissioner of Community Affairs shall, in accordance with the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.) promulgate rules and regulations necessary for the implementation of this act.
1[4. There is appropriated $550,000 from the General Fund to the Department of Community Affairs to effectuate the purposes of this act.]1
1[5.] 4.1 This act shall take effect on the first day of the tenth month after enactment and apply only to initial fire fighter appointments thereafter.
Mandates basic training for certain newly-appointed entry-level firefighters.