Provides that authorities having control of a fire department or fire company which provide emergency medical services may establish fees and charges for services.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the general municipal law and the town law, in relation to authorizing fees and charges for emergency medical services
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: The bill would allow fire departments to charge for emergency medical services provided. They are prohibited from doing so at this time.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: This bill amends section 209-b (4) of the General Municipal Law to remove the prohibition of fire department emergency medical billing. This bill also amends Section 122-b (1)(e) of the General Municipal Law and Section 184(1) of the town law in order to authorize contracting with fire department emergency medical service units.
JUSTIFICATION: Paragraph 4 of section 209-b of the General Municipal Law prohibits any ambulance service, which is run as part of a fire department, from charging a fee for such service. Every other emergency medical provider in the state is allowed to charge for such service. If enacted, this bill would simply allow fire departments to recover costs for services rendered. The ever increasing costs of state mandates, coupled with increases in equipment and personnel costs have led many municipality and volunteer ambulance providers to charge for this very costly service. If the ambulance is provided through a police department, ambulance department, volunteer ambulance corps, or even contracted with a proprietary/for-profit service, a fee can be charged. However if the service is rendered by a fire department, no fee may be charge. This legislation would not require any fee to be established, but would offer municipalities and volunteer fire companies the opportunity to recover these ever increasing, mandated costs.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New Bill.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: Ninety days after it shall have become law.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ S. 3262 A. 4113 2013-2014 Regular Sessions S E N A T E - A S S E M B L Y January 31, 2013 ___________IN SENATE -- Introduced by Sen. LITTLE -- read twice and ordered print- ed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Local Govern- ment IN ASSEMBLY -- Introduced by M. of A. BRINDISI -- read once and referred to the Committee on Local Governments AN ACT to amend the general municipal law and the town law, in relation to authorizing fees and charges for emergency medical services THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Subdivision 4 of section 209-b of the general municipal law, as amended by chapter 718 of the laws of 1958, is amended to read as follows: 4. Fees and charges
[prohibited]AUTHORIZED. Emergency and general ambulance service, INCLUDING EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICE AS DEFINED IN SECTION THREE THOUSAND ONE OF THE PUBLIC HEALTH LAW, authorized pursuant to this section [shall]MAY be furnished without cost to the person served; PROVIDED, HOWEVER, THAT THE AUTHORITIES HAVING CONTROL OF A FIRE DEPARTMENT OR FIRE COMPANY THAT HAVE AUTHORIZED SUCH FIRE DEPARTMENT OR FIRE COMPANY TO PROVIDE SUCH SERVICE OR SERVICES MAY FIX A SCHEDULE OF FEES OR CHARGES TO BE PAID BY PERSONS REQUESTING SUCH SERVICE OR SERVICES. THE AUTHORITIES HAVING CONTROL OF A FIRE DEPARTMENT OR FIRE COMPANY MAY PROVIDE FOR THE COLLECTION OF FEES AND CHARGES OR MAY FORMU- LATE RULES AND REGULATIONS FOR THE COLLECTION THEREOF BY THE FIRE DEPARTMENT OR FIRE COMPANY. WHEN FEES AND CHARGES ARE AUTHORIZED PURSU- ANT TO THIS SUBDIVISION, THE FEES AND CHARGES COLLECTED SHALL BE DISBURSED IN ACCORDANCE WITH A WRITTEN CONTRACT ENTERED INTO BETWEEN THE AUTHORITY HAVING CONTROL OF A FIRE DEPARTMENT OR FIRE COMPANY AND THE FIRE DEPARTMENT OR FIRE COMPANY ITSELF. The acceptance by any fireman of any personal remuneration or gratuity, directly or indirectly, from aEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD02803-01-3 S. 3262 2 A. 4113
person served shall be a ground for his expulsion or suspension as a member of the fire department or fire company. S 2. Paragraph (e) of subdivision 1 of section 122-b of the general municipal law, as amended by chapter 303 of the laws of 1980, is amended to read as follows: (e)
[No]A contract [shall]MAY be entered into pursuant to the provisions of this section for the services of an emergency rescue and first aid squad of a fire department or fire company which is subject to the provisions of section two hundred nine-b of the general municipal law; S 3. Subdivision 1 of section 184 of the town law, as amended by chap- ter 599 of the laws of 1994, is amended to read as follows: 1. Whenever the town board shall have established or extended a fire protection district pursuant to the provisions of this article, the town board shall provide for the furnishing of fire protection within the district and for that purpose may (a) contract with any city, village, fire district or incorporated fire company maintaining adequate and suitable apparatus and appliances for the furnishing of fire protection in such district or (b) may acquire by gift or purchase such apparatus and appliances for use in such district and may contract with any city, village, fire district or incorporated fire company for operation, main- tenance, and repair of the same and for the furnishing of fire protection in such district, or both. The contract may also provide for the furnishing of (1) emergency service in case of accidents, calamities or other emergencies in connection with which the services of firefight- ers would be required and (2) general ambulance service subject, howev- er, to the provisions of section two hundred nine-b of the general municipal law. In the event that the fire department or fire company furnishing fire protection within the district pursuant to contract does not maintain and operate an ambulance then a separate contract may be made for the furnishing within the district of emergency ambulance service or general ambulance service, or both, with any city, village or fire district the fire department of which, or with an incorporated fire company having its headquarters outside the district which, maintains and operates an ambulance subject, however, in the case of general ambu- lance service, to the provisions of section two hundred nine-b of the general municipal law, or with an ambulance service, certified or regis- tered pursuant to article thirty of the public health law [, which is not organized under the provisions of section two hundred nine-b of the general municipal law]. Any such contract with any such ambulance service permitted herein shall be subject to the provisions of this section. S 4. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after it shall have become a law.