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Fire District Training Materials

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This publication is intended as an information source for clients, prospective clients, and colleagues. The content should not be considered legal advice and readers should not act upon information in this publication without individualized professional counsel.

© Peter J. Weishaar and Rochester Law Review, 2013 – 2018.

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AFDSNYLast weekend, I was honored to teach the state-mandated fire commissioner training course on behalf of the Association of Fire Districts of the State of New York in Allegany, New York.  As a follow-up to that training, I wanted to provide some links and additional information about the supplemental materials I discussed during my presentation.

Over the course of the training session, I made reference to both the Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) and the Open Meetings Law (OML).  Both laws apply to fire districts, and there is a lot of very useful information about these laws published by the Committee on Open Government, an agency within the New York Department of State.  For example, there is an advisory opinion index for each of these laws, as well as a model FOIL policy that is a good resource for developing or revising your district’s policy.

The New York State Comptroller’s Office is another indispensable resource.  The Comptroller’s website includes a page dedicated to fire districts.  Here, you will find links to recent fire district audits, a model form RFP for auditing services, and a model code of ethics.  You can also download a PDF copy of the Comptroller’s Accounting and Reporting Manual for Fire Districts if you do not already have a copy.  You may also wish to subscribe to the Comptroller’s weekly email newsletter, which often includes links to new fire district and other local government audits.

Other resources available from the Comptroller’s website include:

The Association of Fire Districts of the State of New Yourk also has numerous guides, model policies and newsletters available on its website to help you carry out your duties as a commissioner of other fire district officer.

During one of the breaks, I was asked briefly about fundraising, and I wanted to provide a citation to the applicable statute.  Fundraising by fire departments and fire companies is governed by Section 204-a of the General Municipal Law.  While a board of fire commissioners can prohibit or restrict certain kinds of fundraising activity, such action should not be undertaken without first consulting with knowledgeable legal counsel.

Finally, there was a discussion about the New York State Emergency Services Revolving Loan Fund.  More information about this program can be found here.

This publication is intended as an information source for clients, prospective clients, and colleagues and constitutes attorney advertising. The content should not be considered legal advice and readers should not act upon information in this publication without individualized professional counsel.

About MCCM

McConville Considine Cooman & Morin, P.C. is a full service law firm based in Rochester, New York, providing high quality legal services to businesses and individuals since 1979.  With over a dozen attorneys and a full paralegal support staff, the firm is well-positioned to right-size services tailored to each client. We are large enough to provide expertise in a broad range of practice areas, yet small enough to devote prompt, personal attention to our clients.

We represent a diverse range of clients located throughout New York State and New England.  They include individuals, numerous manufacturing and service industry businesses, local governments, and health care professionals, provider groups, facilities and associations. We also serve as local counsel to out-of-state clients and their attorneys who have litigation pending in Western New York courts.  For more information, please contact me at 585.546.2500.

 


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