State Senator James Seward was joined in Albany on Monday by Assemblyman Chris Tague to introduce legislation to aid volunteer first responders.

The bill would give a full state income tax reduction to volunteer firefighters and EMS personnel.

To be eligible for the state income tax exemption, a volunteer must be in good standing with their respective organizations, have completed a minimum of one year of service, have fully completed all state mandated training courses, be certified by the chief emergency service coordinator of their county and have attended at least 55 percent of annual calls.

“During my time in the state senate I have worked closely with many EMS providers, both volunteer and career, on a number of important initiatives – new laws, grant opportunities, and recruitment efforts.  This exemption would serve as a well-deserved thank you for the men and women who give freely of themselves to keep our communities safe. The legislation would also be a powerful recruitment tool to help boost our depleted volunteer EMS rolls” said Seward.

The legislation has been referred to the Senate Budget and Revenue Committee and the Assembly Ways and Means Committee.

This is National EMS week.

photo courtesy of Senator Seward's Office