Friday, August 23, 2013

Crisco: New law allows firefighters' fundraisers on state roads

Creates special event permits 
HARTFORD - State Sen. Joseph J. Crisco, Jr., D-Woodbridge,  joined Gov. Dannel P. Malloy in his Capitol office last Friday for the ceremonial signing of Public Act 13-93, “An Act Authorizing Firefighters to Conduct Charitable Fundraising Boot Drives on State Highways.” 

The law will allow special event permits for “boot drives” held by firefighters statewide.

Charitable “fill-the-boot” events have been held regularly for years by fire departments to raise much-needed, supplemental funds. Recently, local law enforcement agencies and the state Department of Transportation raised safety concerns about the events. 
In Derby, firefighters were ordered to end a fundraiser because it took place on a state road.

“When requested, these permits will allow firefighters to lawfully hold their fundraisers in locations where traffic controls are already in place and the speed limit is reasonably low,”  Crisco said. “This law is a commonsense solution that allows our firefighters to continue to raise essential funds to purchase equipment or provide monetary assistance to fire victims, while adhering to safety protocol so as to ensure that no firefighter or passerby is put in harm’s way.”

The new law limits the allowable locations for these boot drives to intersections where there is a stop sign or traffic light, and where the speed limit is 30 miles per hour or less.

Firefighters from Derby joined Crisco at the bill signing, and were thrilled that these special event permits will allow them to continue their fundraising efforts.

The Derby Fire Department had conducted Boot Drives for nearly three decades along Route 34 without incident. 
It was only in 2010 that they were notified by the state Department of Transportation of a prohibition on boot drives along state highways.
The special event permits created under this new law will remedy this problem by exempting certain fundraisers such as these from the prohibition.

This is a press release from Crisco's office.

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