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Fire companies may soon bulk purchase

Rescue Hook and Ladder Co. No. 1 of

Rescue Hook and Ladder Co. No. 1 of Roslyn formed in 1852 and relocated to Mineola Avenue in 1937. (Sept. 9, 2011) (Credit: Ann Luk)

Fire companies soon might be able join with other fire agencies to make joint purchases, fixing a technicality in state law which allowed only fire districts to do so.

Long Island’s 21 fire companies — which operate in a similar fashion as fire districts but have a different status — are not included in current state law which allows for the consolidated purchasing of equipment and supplies by nonprofit corporations. Bulk purchasing allows for greater cost savings.

The new legislation, authored by two Long Island legislators — Sen. Kenneth P. LaValle (R-Port Jefferson) and Assemb. Robert Sweeney (D-Lindenhurst) — has passed both the Assembly and Senate and is being reviewed by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo before being signed into law.

“Now, fire companies can enter into an agreement to purchase new hoses or helmets and be afforded a discount on their combined, larger purchase. It makes sense for the fire companies and more importantly for the tax payers who foot the bill,” LaValle said in a statement.

Most fire companies are in Nassau County, with the only five in Suffolk located in the Town of Babylon, which is represented by Sweeney.

“This bill will help the volunteers to continue to provide proficient and expert emergency services at a lower cost,” Sweeney said in the statement.

Tags: Lindenhurst , Port Jefferson , fire houses

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