What: All Issues : Labor Rights : Rights of Public Employees : (H.R. 1) On an amendment waving a provision of current law that required fire departments receiving federal funding to limit salaries, and prohibited them from laying off firefighters for two years. This amendment was offered to legislation funding the federal government (such bills are known as “continuing resolutions, or “CRs”) through September 2011, and cutting $61 billion in federal funding for many government programs. (2011 house Roll Call 82)
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(H.R. 1) On an amendment waving a provision of current law that required fire departments receiving federal funding to limit salaries, and prohibited them from laying off firefighters for two years. This amendment was offered to legislation funding the federal government (such bills are known as “continuing resolutions, or “CRs”) through September 2011, and cutting $61 billion in federal funding for many government programs.
house Roll Call 82     Feb 17, 2011
Progressive Position:
Yea
Progressive Result:
Win

This was a vote on an amendment by Rep. David Price (D-NC) waving a provision of current law that required fire departments receiving federal funding to limit salaries, and prohibited them from laying off firefighters for two years. This amendment was offered to legislation funding the federal government (such bills are known as “continuing resolutions, or “CRs”) through September 2011, and cutting $61 billion in federal funding for many government programs.

Price urged support for his amendment: “…These provisions [requirements] are fine when local coffers are healthy, but we all know how strapped our cities and counties are right now, and these requirements, quite simply, are impossible for many of them to meet….if we don't pass this amendment and waive these provisions, the fire organizations tell me that very few departments will be able to apply for [federal] funds. The burden of these requirements is simply too much right now. The result will be more firefighter layoffs, fewer rehires, and a less prepared country.”

Rep. Harold Rogers (R-KY) opposed the amendment: “Under these costly waivers, there are no controls, no salary limits, no local commitments. These proposed waivers totally undermine the original purpose and intent of the… program by forcing the taxpayers to subsidize the everyday operating expenses of local first responders, taking over, in essence, the funding of the local firemen. Given our nation's dire fiscal situation, we must take a stand that it is not the federal government's job to bail out every municipal budget or to serve as the fire marshal for every city and town across the country.”

The House agreed to this amendment by a vote of 267-159. Voting “yea” were 188 Democrats and 79 Republicans. 156 Republicans and 3 Democrats voted “nay.” As a result, the House agreed to an amendment waving a provision of current law that required fire departments receiving federal funding to limit salaries, and prohibited them from laying off firefighters for two years.

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