Saturday, December 02, 2023


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News Article
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Treated Differently?

            Most of us were around on September 11, 2001, when more than 3,000 people were killed in the horrific attacks that day.  Hundreds more have died of related injuries and illnesses since then.

            The images of firefighters rushing into the Big Apple's Twin Towers while victims were rushing out were inspiring.  Scenes of emergency medical personnel and police in the danger zones working to help victims motivated many to help out.

            Our hearts dropped when the buildings collapsed with so many still inside.

            Some of those images inspired many to come forward in their communities to help their first responders.

            But, that was 22 years ago.

            Buried in the rising costs of just about everything, folks have less money to donate to those vital organizations that are there to serve them.  Frankly, some residents just don't care – until they need them.  More and more new people moving into the area assume that their tax dollars fully fund the emergency groups because, well, that's the way it was where they came from.

            Local municipalities make donations to the fire and ambulance groups, usually from their general funds.  That amount, however, could change from year to year based on the municipality's finances. After all it is a donation, not a committed expense.

            Those who can, still feel the responsibility to donate and support the fundraising efforts of the groups.

            Maybe it's time for an emergency services tax, but that would only be a burden to property owners.  Maybe it's time for the Pennsylvania Legislature and Insurance Commission to require insurance companies to fully reimburse first responders for the full cost of their supplies and equipment used. 

            How can we ensure that these vital services are there when the community needs them? How can we encourage residents to donate?  Fair-share takes on many different meanings during tough economic times.  Some people can't afford to donate and some just don't.

            We complain when we have to pay nearly $4 per gallon when we fill up our vehicles.  Imagine paying upwards of $5 per gallon every time you fill up a 100-gallon tank on a fire truck.  Replacing an outdated fire truck will cost your fire company more than one million dollars today.  Where's that money coming from?

            When you or a loved one needs a fire company, you want the best available equipment and trained staff tending to your needs don't you?  Maybe not new equipment but the best available.  You wouldn't expect less at a hospital or vehicle service station.

            Why does it seem that volunteer fire companies are treated differently?






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