Two proposed laws that would alter how firefighters in Michigan are trained have been approved by the state’s senate.
One bill would establish improved training standards, something that’s not been updated for 30 years, and allow flexibility for training requirements to be set area by area. Conceivably, such a move could help recruit more volunteer or paid on-call firefighters. It would also expand the Fire Fighters Training Council from seven to nine members.
The second bill would give that council the power to spend as they choose money allocated to firefighter training that comes from fees tied to the sale of fireworks.
“Under these bills, the council would be allowed to develop rules and offer certification in specialized areas of the fire service, such as technical rescue, airport rescue and hazardous materials response,” Michigan State Sen. Jim Stamas told the Michigan Peninsula News. “It is all part of an effort to give firefighter training experts the ability to ensure that every Michigan community continues to have trained men and women ready to respond in fire emergencies.”
Both bills still must be passed by the state’s house of representatives and then go to the governor for approval before becoming law.