Politics & Law Magazine Articles

  • Bush Budget Plan Nearly Killed FIRE Act Funding For 2002

    The fire-rescue service had its first contact with the Bush administration and, for a few weeks, it felt like a swift kick in the stomach. Without warning, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) killed the FIRE Act program for the next fiscal year...

    Article • March 31st, 2001

  • Security Commission Urges National Effort Against Terrorism

    A new report on national security warns that the United States is dangerously unprepared to prevent or react to catastrophic acts of terrorism. It bluntly points out that "a direct attack against American citizens on American soil is likely over the...

    Article • February 28th, 2001

  • Federal Grant Requests Sought From Local Fire Departments

    After years of fighting an uphill battle, the fire-rescue service finally has a federal program that will provide direct financial aid to the nation's fire departments. Now the challenge is to make it work by showing Congress how local fire departments...

    Article • January 31st, 2001

  • Labor & Management Cooperate On NFPA 1710 Staffing Standard

    Cooperation between labor and management has produced a revised proposal for the National Fire Protection Association's (NFPA) new standard on the organization and deployment of fire suppression and emergency medical forces in career departments. Known as...

    Article • December 31st, 2000

  • Fire-Rescue Service Funds Tied Up In Congressional Maze

    This month I was hoping to report that Congress had appropriated the money for a new federal program to aid the nation's fire departments. But, as this is written, it's still unresolved. When the House and the Senate recessed at the end of October...

    Article • November 30th, 2000

  • Congress Authorizes Watered-Down FIRE Act

    Against all odds, a two-year program to provide $400 million in federal aid to local fire departments was authorized in the closing days of the 106th Congress. It's a thin, watered-down version of the original FIRE Act, but it could be a start that...

    Article • October 31st, 2000

  • FIRE Act Caught In Capitol Hill Crossfire

    The United States Congress is a place where things often are not as they seem to be. It's like a burning building, with dead-end corridors, false ceilings, hidden truss roofs and hazardous materials that look innocent but can suddenly explode in a...

    Article • October 1st, 2000

  • Sprinkler Legislation: Mesa's Partial Success Story

    Passing a sprinkler law is one of the most difficult political and educational challenges a fire department can face. However, it is not insurmountable if there has been careful, step-by-step planning that includes an intensive public education...

    Article • September 1st, 2000

  • Fire-Rescue Personnel Eligible For New Presidential Award

    In a most welcome and unexpected action, President Clinton has created a Presidential Medal of Valor for Public Safety Officers that will include firefighters and emergency responders as well as police and other law enforcement personnel. The executive...

    Article • August 1st, 2000

  • The Outlook Is Grim For Fire Service Legislation

    As the final months of the 106th Congress come into view, bills aimed at bringing federal aid to the nation's fire departments are slowly sinking into a pit of legislative quicksand. The situation reveals two glaring weaknesses that have handicapped the...

    Article • July 1st, 2000

  • From Bad To Worse In Nation's Capital

    In the April issue, this column optimistically reported on how the District of Columbia's acting fire chief was making progress in bringing his department back from the devastation caused by years of reckless budget cuts, Unfortunately, he ran head-on...

    Article • June 1st, 2000

  • House Amendment Earmarks $100 Million To Aid Fire Service

    The U.S. House of Representatives has passed a supplemental budget bill that includes $100 million in federal aid for local fire departments.

    Article • May 1st, 2000

  • The Fall & Rise Of The DCFD

    This month, for a change, I have some good news to report. Engine 3, of the District of Columbia Fire Department, has been placed in service only three blocks from the U.S. Capitol Building.

    Article • March 31st, 2000

  • Fire Politics: Budget Surprise Adds Funds For Federal Fire Programs

    All of the public apathy, political indifference and official ignorance that surrounds the fire-rescue service came to mind as I listened to President Clinton deliver his State of the Union address.

    Article • February 29th, 2000

  • Preparing Ourselves For The Worst

    The recent deaths of nine firefighters in Worcester, MA, and Keokuk, IA, are a sad reminder that every fire department must be prepared to deal with these terrible events. While everyone is concerned with learning how to prevent these accidents from...

    Article • January 31st, 2000