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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

SF 3860

as introduced - 85th Legislature (2007 - 2008) Posted on 12/15/2009 12:00am

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.

Current Version - as introduced

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A bill for an act
relating to firefighters; adding duties to the Board of Firefighter Standards and
Training; authorizing rulemaking; creating licensing standards; appropriating
money; amending Minnesota Statutes 2006, sections 299F.012, subdivision 2;
299N.01; 299N.02, as amended; proposing coding for new law in Minnesota
Statutes, chapter 299N.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 299F.012, subdivision 2, is amended to
read:


Subd. 2.

Fire Service Advisory Committee.

The Fire Service Advisory Committee
shall provide recommendations to the commissioner of public safety on fire service-related
issues and shall consist of representatives of each of the following organizations: two
appointed by the president of the Minnesota State Fire Chiefs Association, two appointed
by the president of the Minnesota State Fire Department Association, two appointed by
the president of the Minnesota Professional Fire Fighters, two appointed by the president
of the League of Minnesota Cities, one appointed by the president of the Minnesota
Association of Townships, one appointed by the president of the Insurance Federation
of Minnesota, one appointed jointly by the presidents of the Minnesota Chapter of the
International Association of Arson Investigators and the Fire Marshals Association of
Minnesota, and the commissioner of public safety or the commissioner's designee. The
commissioner of public safety must ensure that at least three of the members of the
advisory committee work and reside in counties outside of the seven-county metropolitan
area. The committee shall provide funding recommendations to the commissioner of
public safety from the fire safety fund for the following purposes:

(1) for the Minnesota Board of Firefighter new text beginStandards and new text endTraining deleted text beginand Educationdeleted text end;

(2) for programs and staffing for the State Fire Marshal Division; and

(3) for fire-related regional response team programs and any other fire service
programs that have the potential for statewide impact.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 299N.01, is amended to read:


299N.01 DEFINITIONS.

Subdivision 1.

Scope.

The terms used in this chapter have the meanings given
them in this section.

new text begin Subd. 1a. new text end

new text begin Board. new text end

new text begin "Board" means the Board of Firefighter Standards and Training.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 1b. new text end

new text begin Chief firefighting officer. new text end

new text begin "Chief firefighting officer" means the highest
ranking employee or appointed official of a fire department.
new text end

Subd. 2.

Fire department.

"Fire department" means a regularly organized fire
department, fire protection district, or fire company, as defined in the State Fire Code
adopted under section 299F.011,new text begin or a division of a state agency,new text end regularly charged with the
responsibility of providing fire protection to the state or a local government and includes a
private nonprofit fire department directly serving a local government. It does not include
industrial fire brigades.

new text begin Subd. 2a. new text end

new text begin Firefighter education. new text end

new text begin "Firefighter education" means a postsecondary
degree program, or a nondegree program for persons who already have a college degree,
that is offered by a college or university in Minnesota, designed for persons seeking
licensure as a firefighter and approved by the board.
new text end

Subd. 3.

new text beginLicensed new text endfirefighter.

"new text beginLicensed new text endfirefighter" means deleted text begina volunteer, paid
on-call, part-time, or career firefighter serving a general population
deleted text end new text begina firefighter who is
licensed by the board and who is charged with the prevention or suppression of fires
new text endwithin the boundaries of the state.new text begin "Firefighter" includes employees, members, their
supervisors, and appointed officials of fire departments.
new text end

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 299N.02, as amended by Laws 2007, chapter
54, article 7, section 20, is amended to read:


299N.02 BOARD OF FIREFIGHTER TRAINING AND EDUCATION.

Subdivision 1.

Membership.

Notwithstanding any provision of chapter 15 to the
contrary, the Board of Firefighter new text beginStandards and new text endTraining deleted text beginand Educationdeleted text end consists of the
following members:

(1) five members representing the Minnesota State Fire Department Association,
four of whom must be volunteer firefighters and one of whom may be a deleted text begincareerdeleted text endnew text begin licensednew text end
firefighter, appointed by the governor;

(2) two members representing the Minnesota State Fire Chiefs Association, one of
whom must be a volunteer fire chief, appointed by the governor;

(3) two members representing the Minnesota Professional Firefighters Association,
appointed by the governor;

(4) two members representing Minnesota home rule charter and statutory cities,
appointed by the governor;

(5) two members representing Minnesota towns, appointed by the governor;

(6) the commissioner of public safety or the commissioner's designee; and

(7) one public member not affiliated or associated with any member or interest
represented in clauses (1) to (6), appointed by the governor.

The Minnesota State Fire Department Association shall recommend five persons to
be the members described in clause (1), the Minnesota State Fire Chiefs Association
shall recommend two persons to be the members described in clause (2), the Minnesota
Professional Firefighters Association shall recommend two persons to be the members
described in clause (3), the League of Minnesota Cities shall recommend two persons to
be the members described in clause (4), and the Minnesota Association of Townships
shall recommend two persons to be the members described in clause (5). In making the
appointments the governor shall try to achieve representation from all geographic areas of
the state.

Subd. 2.

Terms; chair; compensation.

Members of the board shall serve for terms
of four years and annually elect a chair from among the members. Terms and filling of
vacancies are subject to section 15.0575, subdivisions 2, 4, and 5. Members serve without
compensation.

Subd. 3.

Powers and duties.

(a) The board deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin has the following powers and
duties
new text end:

(1) new text beginto new text endreview fire service training needs and make recommendations on training
to Minnesota fire service organizations;

(2) new text beginto new text endestablish standards for educational programs for the fire service and develop
procedures for continuing oversight of the programs; deleted text beginand
deleted text end

(3) new text beginto new text endestablish qualifications for fire service training instructors in programs
established under clause (2)deleted text begin.deleted text endnew text begin;
new text end

new text begin (4) to certify firefighters' training schools or programs administered by the state, the
University of Minnesota, the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, counties, and
municipalities located within the state in whole or in part no later than 90 days after
receipt of an application for certification. The reasons for noncertification of any school
or program or part thereof must be transmitted to the school or program within 90 days
and must contain a detailed explanation of the reasons for which the school or program
was disapproved and an explanation of what supporting material or other requirements
are necessary for the board to reconsider. Disapproval of a school or program does not
preclude the reapplication for certification of the school or program;
new text end

new text begin (5) to issue certificates to schools or programs, and to revoke certification when
necessary to maintain the objectives and purposes of this chapter;
new text end

new text begin (6) to certify as qualified instructors at firefighter training schools or programs and to
issue appropriate certificates to the instructors;
new text end

new text begin (7) to certify apprenticeship programs maintained by fire departments;
new text end

new text begin (8) to license firefighters who have satisfactorily completed skills-oriented basic
training courses, and passed examinations as required by the board;
new text end

new text begin (9) to cause studies and surveys to be made relating to the establishment, operation,
and approval of state, the University of Minnesota, the Minnesota State Colleges and
Universities, county, and municipal firefighter training schools or programs;
new text end

new text begin (10) to consult and cooperate with state, the University of Minnesota, the Minnesota
State Colleges and Universities, county, and municipal firefighter training schools or
programs for the development of in-service training programs for firefighters;
new text end

new text begin (11) to consult and cooperate with Minnesota State Colleges and Universities for
the development of specialized courses of instruction and study in the state for licensed
firefighters and firefighters in fire science and fire department administration;
new text end

new text begin (12) to consult and cooperate with other departments and agencies of the state and
federal government concerned with firefighter standards and training;
new text end

new text begin (13) to perform other acts that are necessary and appropriate to carry out the powers
and duties of this chapter;
new text end

new text begin (14) to coordinate the provision, on a regional basis, of skills-oriented basic training
courses to graduates of firefighter education programs; and
new text end

new text begin (15) to prepare and transmit annually to the governor a report of its activities with
respect to allocation of money appropriated to it for firefighter training, including the
name and address of each recipient of money for that purpose, the amount awarded, and
the purpose of the award.
new text end

(b) The board may:

(1) hire or contract for technical or professional services according to section 15.061;

(2) pay expenses necessary to carry out its duties;

(3) apply for, receive, and accept grants, gifts, devises, and endowments that any
entity may make to the board for the purposes of this chapter and may use any money
given to it consistent with the terms and conditions under which the money was received
and for the purposes stated;

(4) make recommendations to the legislature to improve the quality of firefighter
training;

(5) collect and provide data, subject to section 13.03;

(6) conduct studies and surveys and make reports; and

(7) conduct other activities necessary to carry out its duties.

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Reporting requirements. new text end

new text begin The board shall report to the state fire marshal
and to the governor at least every two years concerning the activities of the board. The
board shall also report every two years to the chairs of the senate and house committees
and divisions having jurisdiction over criminal justice funding concerning the activities of
the board.
new text end

Sec. 4.

new text begin [299N.03] RULES.
new text end

new text begin The board shall adopt rules with respect to:
new text end

new text begin (1) the certification of firefighter training schools, programs, or courses. The schools,
programs, and courses must include those administered by the state, county, school
district, municipality, or joint or contractual combinations thereof, and must include
preparatory instruction in firefighting and minimum basic training courses. The schools or
programs shall also grant credit toward a firefighter education degree for training or course
work successfully completed as part of an apprenticeship program certified by the board;
new text end

new text begin (2) minimum courses of study, attendance requirements, and equipment and facilities
to be required at each certified firefighter training school or program located within the
state;
new text end

new text begin (3) minimum qualifications for instructors at certified firefighter training schools or
programs located within the state;
new text end

new text begin (4) minimum standards of conduct that would affect an individual's performance
of duties as a licensed firefighter. The board shall review the minimum standards of
conduct described in this clause for possible modification in 2012 and every three years
after that time;
new text end

new text begin (5) minimum basic training which licensed firefighters appointed to temporary or
probationary terms shall complete before being eligible for permanent appointment, and
the time within which the basic training must be completed following any appointment to
a temporary or probationary term;
new text end

new text begin (6) content of minimum basic training courses required of graduates of certified
firefighting training schools or programs. The courses must not duplicate the content
of certified academic or general background courses completed by a student but must
concentrate on practical skills deemed essential for a firefighter. Successful completion of
the course is considered satisfaction of the minimum basic training requirement; and
new text end

new text begin (7) grading, reporting, attendance, and other records, and certificates of attendance
or accomplishment.
new text end

Sec. 5.

new text begin [299N.04] TERMS; MEETINGS; COMPENSATION; REMOVAL;
VACANCIES.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Board procedural matters. new text end

new text begin Meetings shall be called at the request
of the chair or upon the written request of a majority of the members of the board.
Membership on the board does not constitute the holding of a public office, and members
of the board are not required to take and file oaths of office or submit a public official's
bond before serving on the board. No member of the board is disqualified from holding
any public office or employment, by reason of appointment to the board, nor shall the
member forfeit any such office or employment notwithstanding any general, special, or
local restriction; ordinance; or city charter to the contrary.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Terms, compensation, removal, and filling of vacancies. new text end

new text begin The
membership terms, compensation, removal of members, and filling of vacancies for
members appointed under section 299N.02; the provision of staff, administrative services,
and office space; the review and processing of complaints; the setting of fees; and other
matters relating to board operations are as provided in chapter 214.
new text end

Sec. 6.

new text begin [299N.05] MINIMUM EDUCATION AND TRAINING REQUIREMENTS
FOR LICENSED FIREFIGHTERS.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Eligibility to take licensing examination. new text end

new text begin A person is not eligible to
take the licensing examination unless the person has successfully met the requirements
of section 299N.08.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin In-service training; board requirements. new text end

new text begin The board must provide
instructional materials to chief firefighting officers. These materials must meet board
requirements for continuing education credit and be updated periodically as the board
considers appropriate.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin In-service training; chief firefighting officer requirements. new text end

new text begin A chief
firefighting officer must ensure that all licensed firefighters within the officer's department
have been provided with the instructional materials provided by the board under
subdivision 2 and informed of the availability of continuing education credit for the
completion of these materials. The chief firefighting officer must also encourage these
licensed firefighters to review or complete the materials.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Record keeping required. new text end

new text begin The chief firefighting officer of every fire
department shall maintain written records of the department's compliance with the
requirements of subdivisions 1 and 3.
new text end

Sec. 7.

new text begin [299N.06] LICENSE REQUIRED.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Licensure requirement. new text end

new text begin Notwithstanding any general or local law
or charter to the contrary, a firefighter employed in a full-time position on or after July 1,
2012, by any state, county, municipality, or joint or contractual combination thereof of
the state of Minnesota is not eligible for permanent appointment without being licensed
by the board.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Forfeiture of position. new text end

new text begin Every full-time firefighter or firefighter who is
appointed by any state, county, municipality, or joint or contractual combination thereof of
the state of Minnesota on a temporary basis or for a probationary term shall forfeit the
firefighter's position unless the officer has been licensed by the board within the time
period determined by the board.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Grandparent provision. new text end

new text begin A firefighter who has received a permanent
appointment with a fire department prior to July 1, 2012, shall be licensed by the board
at the request of the firefighter.
new text end

Sec. 8.

new text begin [299N.07] LICENSING EXAMINATIONS; COMPETENCY
REQUIREMENTS.
new text end

new text begin Firefighter licensing examinations must be prepared and administered by the
Minnesota Fire Service Certification Board, or any other entity that is certified by the
International Fire Service Accreditation Congress and approved by the board. Firefighter
licensing examinations shall be designed to ensure competency in at least the following
areas:
new text end

new text begin (1) fire prevention;
new text end

new text begin (2) fire suppression;
new text end

new text begin (3) hazardous materials;
new text end

new text begin (4) fire apparatus operations; and
new text end

new text begin (5) other areas as determined by the board.
new text end

new text begin The board shall prepare learning objectives for courses to test competency under this
section. Upon request, the board shall provide to any chief firefighting officer lesson plans
and instructional materials reasonably necessary to conduct classes in the required areas
of study. Nothing in this section may be construed to prohibit a requirement for more
comprehensive training imposed by a local fire department.
new text end

Sec. 9.

new text begin [299N.08] ELIGIBILITY FOR FIREFIGHTER LICENSING.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Eligibility for licensing examination. new text end

new text begin Any person may take the
firefighter licensing examination who has successfully completed:
new text end

new text begin (1) (i) a firefighter course certified by the board from a postsecondary educational
institution or an accredited institution of higher learning; or
new text end

new text begin (ii) an apprenticeship program certified by the board and maintained by a fire
department employing the person; and
new text end

new text begin (2) a skills-oriented basic training course established under section 299N.02,
subdivision 3, clause (8).
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Certain baccalaureate degree holders eligible to take licensing
examination.
new text end

new text begin A person with a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or
university who has successfully completed the skills-oriented basic training course under
subdivision 1, clause (2), is eligible to take the firefighter licensing examination without
complying with subdivision 1, clause (1).
new text end

Sec. 10.

new text begin [299N.09] FIREFIGHTER EDUCATION PROGRAMS.
new text end

new text begin The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, in consultation with the Board of
Firefighter Standards and Training and fire departments in the seven-county metropolitan
area, shall provide core firefighter education courses in an accelerated time period.
The schools shall grant priority admission to students who have a bona fide offer of
employment from a Minnesota fire department. These courses shall be available at the
beginning of the 2011-2012 academic year and are contingent on sufficient program
enrollment. The board, Metropolitan State University, and Minneapolis Community
College shall evaluate the accelerated firefighter education programs and report their
findings to the 2013 legislature.
new text end

Sec. 11. new text beginAPPROPRIATION.
new text end

new text begin $150,000 is appropriated each year of the biennium from the general fund to the
Board of Firefighter Standards and Training to certify firefighter training schools or
programs, school and program instructors, and apprentice programs; to develop rules with
respect to those certifications and schools and programs; and to develop the licensing
process for firefighters required by Minnesota Statutes, chapter 299N.
new text end