Reimbursement to City of Harrisburg for Fire Protection and Emergency Services
October 8, 2013- Howard Ondick
HARRISBURG- Two state lawmakers are pushing legislation that would
make permanent the state reimbursement of funds to the city of Harrisburg for
fire protection and emergency services at the State Capitol complex.
Senator Rob Teplitz of Dauphin County, sponsor of the legislation in the state
Senate, whose district includes the city of Harrisburg.
Senator Teplitz and state Representative Patty Kim
(D-Dauphin County), the two state lawmakers who represent the City of
Harrisburg, today unveiled their legislation at a State Capitol news conference
to provide permanent state support to the city for providing fire and emergency
Senator Teplitz and Rep. Kim have authored identical
legislation that would require full reimbursement from the state to the city
for providing fire protection and emergency services to the 40 tax-exempt
state-owned buildings located in the city.
“The city provides
a vital service to the state by ensuring the safety of thousands of state workers
and visitors of the Capitol Complex, yet the service has always been
underfunded, contributing to Harrisburg’s financial issues,” said Senator
Teplitz, the author of Senate Bill 906. “We appreciate Harrisburg’s
contributions and we want to make sure that the city is fully compensated.”
“I am extremely
grateful for the additional fire protection funding that came from this year’s
budget. But, this is where level funding for Capitol Fire Protection should
have been,” said Rep. Kim.
“There is no legitimate reason for Harrisburg to continue
to subsidize the commonwealth for these valuable services. This proposed legislation will ensure that
Harrisburg is properly reimbursed.”
Earlier this year, Senator Teplitz, Rep. Kim, Harrisburg
Receiver Major General William Lynch and local officials successfully fought
$5 million in the 2013-14 state budget to help cover the
city’s annual cost of providing these services at the Capitol Complex.
The Harrisburg Strong financial recovery plan, which has been
confirmed in commonwealth court, will be counting on continued full funding
from the state for fire and emergency services through 2016.
“I am pleased with
the efforts of Senator Teplitz and Representative Kim on behalf of the City of
Harrisburg,” Lynch said.
“I am sure that they will receive bipartisan support
since the legislation makes sense and is appropriate for the Capital City.”