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January 21, 2014

  01/22/14 Congresswoman Jackie Walorski Tuesday evening held a press conference at the Plymouth Fire Department with Mayor Mark Senter, Fire Chief Rodney Miller, and volunteer and full time firefighters to highlight the importance of the Protecting Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Responders Act, a bill Walorski co-sponsored to exempt volunteer firefighters and volunteer emergency responders from the employer mandate included in Obamacare. 

  “Hoosier first responders are always there to protect our families, and they deserve to be protected from unfair federal regulations in Obamacare,” said Congresswoman Walorski.  “This commonsense, bipartisan bill was introduced to exempt volunteer firefighters and emergency responders from Obamacare’s employer mandate, and I am pleased that the Treasury has agreed to implement these provisions to support public safety.”

  Under Obamacare, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) considers volunteer firefighters and emergency responders working 30 hours per week as full-time employees.  This could force volunteer companies and units to provide health insurance or a pay a fine. 

Under pressure from Congress, the U.S. Treasury announced on January 10th that it will soon issue a final rule to adopt the provisions outlined in the Protecting Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Responders Act—ensuring volunteers will not be strapped with a significant financial burden that could threaten readiness and personnel.  

This bill is supported by the International Association of Fire Chiefs and the National Volunteer Fire Council.  Companion legislation has also been introduced in the Senate.

During the press conference, Mayor Mark Senter and Fire Chief Rodney Miller voiced their appreciation for Walorski’s efforts.

“The Plymouth Fire Department works tirelessly to protect our community and provide incredible emergency response efforts.  I am glad to join Congresswoman Walorski to draw attention to this important issue and make sure future bills passed in Washington will not interfere with our volunteers’ abilities to keep the fire station efficiently running,” said Plymouth Mayor Mark Senter

  “Our firehouse is proud to offer vital emergency services to local Hoosiers.  After learning that the health care law could jeopardize our ability to purchase proper equipment and remain adequately staffed, it was a relief to have Congresswoman Walorski fighting on our behalf,” said Fire Chief Rodney Miller.




  1. Thor on January 24, 2014 at 9:16 am

    I see Mike’s ad hominem attacks know no bounds, even apparently those of sanity. Where exactly was Mr Weaver’s threat? Or the TEA Party even?

    Beyond that, this bill is about not forcing part time employees in the FD to buy unaffordable health insurance. What point in working, certainly risking your life, if there is no reward greater than sitting on your backside doing nothing? Why work just to feed the gaping bureaucratic maw of the socialist leviathan.

    Or perhaps you’d prefer to see the volunteers un-volunteer because they couldn’t afford to keep participating, or because the department could no longer afford to keep them.

    I’m sure there’s some rich guy lurking just around the corner, hoarding his cash, that you could loot though to make it all just fine.

  2. MikeB on January 22, 2014 at 9:36 pm

    I would hope, as a patriotic veteran, that Mr. Weaver’s dangerous comments and other communications come under the scrutiny of our National Security Agency.

  3. Dan Weaver on January 22, 2014 at 4:56 pm

    Seems to me that our first responders can speak for themselves. I really don’t think this is any different than the President having children stand by him when he signs an abortion bill into law.

  4. MikeB on January 22, 2014 at 12:10 am

    God forbid our police, fire and EMT men and women from getting affordable health insurance.

  5. MikeB on January 21, 2014 at 11:46 pm

    I resent using our brave first responders and public facilities for a tea party rally.