1. #1
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    Default OSFM Cuts Cornerstone Funding to IFSI

    Some of you may have heard this already but the Office of the State Fire Marshal has cut off funding to the Illinois Fire Service Institute for the Cornerstone Training Program. This program provides free training to all departments in the state. The OSFM budget was raided for more than $10 million and so the OSFM cut out the $475,000 it provides for this essential training. Without this money and this program many of our states firefighters will not receive even the basic training needed to do their jobs safely and effectively, thus lowering our ability to serve and protect those in our communities and train our firefighters to protect themselves as well. Most of the dept's in our state cannot afford to pay for all this training.

    Please write you state leaders and urge them to contact the OSFM to restore this critical funding. Call the OSFM and ask them to reconsider these cuts. We need the cornerstone program don't just sit back and let it slip away.

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    Pmed, you are very right, if you have never done anything, do this. However you need to take it one step farther and get this funding secured and directly to cornerstone. OSFM has little to do with this program other than it's funding is run through their budget, so it's likely to get cut again if or when it's restored. This same thing happened last year but was put back in, doesn't look likely this year. Our annual fire school relies heavily on this funding and will affect classes to some 200FF from 40 different departments

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    Just amazes me how they can just throw out public safety training like it doesn't matter and fund a bunch of stupid pet projects that mean nothing except to those who asked for them.

    I'm sending letters and posting about this everywhere I can think to do so. Now we just need everyone else in the state to do the same thing.

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    OSFM said that it was either IFSI funding or several jobs at their office. The people there are overworked as it is and losing some of them just wouldn't be good. Yes, we need cornerstone programs so keep on writing and calling the politicians who raided the fire prevention fund. I hate to get political here but one way to get the money restored is to support an income tax increase. We want lots of things and somebody has to pay for them.
    Jack Boczek, Chief
    Ashley Community Fire Protection District

    FLATLANDERS FOREVER!

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    Maybe they could take some money that MABAS wastes on pieces of equipment that are never used and put it to better use with cornerstone.

    I talked with my rep this morning and he said he is going to do some digging and see what he can find out about restoring that money. A lot of you guys lose your training classes with this money gone but I also lose income since one of my jobs is hauling the training trailers around the state.

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    Could be that one of the reasons Cornerstone got cut is because it's not utilized as much as it could be. I'm about as guilty as anybody since we've only done one or maybe two classes a year at our station. Figures that we just tried to schedule our third IFSI class this year when the money dried up.
    I emailed our state rep, Mr. Mike Bost, when word first came out about this. I got absolutely no reply from his office. Wonder how he'd vote on restoring the money?
    Think I'll send him the same email again.
    Jack Boczek, Chief
    Ashley Community Fire Protection District

    FLATLANDERS FOREVER!

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    That could be Jack. I know that we had a class that was spared the cut just last month and it ended up being cut because we didn't have enough people show up. Doesn't make a great arguement for the need in our area. Training is always lacking in our area. Seems like noone wants to come. I end up going to other areas to take classes and such.

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    If you would do some homework before making a post you would find out what the money MABAS gets from the OSFM budget goes for you would not have posted that. So maybe you should talk with your division executive board and they will have an answer for you.

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    Maybe he should have gotten a part time job with Mabas rather than Ifsi, and if your equipment is not getting used thats your fault.

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    I sent emails to Rep. Cavaletto, Senator Jones, and others. This is the info that I received back from Sen. Jones. They're hearing us, we just have to keep talking.

    Dear Chad,

    Thank you for your email sharing your concerns about the funding cuts to the Cornerstone Firefighter Skills Training Program.

    I understand the importance of training programs such as this one. While the State's current budget has resulted in many programs being cut, the Governor does have discretionary funds that he can use to restore funding. So, you may want to also contact the Governor and share your concerns with him as well.

    Again, thank you for taking the time to contact me.

    Sincerely,

    John O. Jones
    Illinois State Senator
    SFPD Member MABAS Division 47
    Told my wife I'm at work. Told my boss I'm sick. I'm really at the fire station.
    I.A.C.O.J.

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    That a way Chad. Now we need everyone to keep hounding them till we get an answer on the restoration of funds. As for MABAS, I think MABAS is one of the greatest things since sliced bread. Our division uses our equipment on a regular basis, it doesn't just sit around and collect dust. If not for MABAS we wouldn't have this equipment available so like everyone else said, do your homework and understand what you are talking about before you cut down something like that.

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