JOB TITLE: Division Director (Georgia Fire Academy Division)

Posted September 18, 2017
GA Public Safety Training Center
1000 Indian Springs Drive; Forsyth, Georgia 31029

Job Vacancy Announcement # 17-0950  Open to All Qualified Applicants POSTED: 09/15/2017 DEADLINE: 09/22/2017

JOB TITLE: Division Director (Georgia Fire Academy Division)
Salary Range: $75,000 - $89,000 annualized ($6,250-$7,416 per month)* *
Actual salary commensurate with credentials offered by candidate and funding availability.

Description of Duties & Responsibilities: Oversees professional staff in the development, review, revision, and delivery of statewide public safety training programs. Directs training development and delivery of instruction. Provides leadership to subordinate managers and staff. Develops and executes operational plans designed to meet the Training Center’s mission and division’s objectives. Maintains communication with agency executives, other agencies/departments and community resources. Selects appropriate methods and techniques for resolving problems. Recommends or initiates personnel actions and administers agency policies.

Minimum Qualifications: High school diploma or GED and Ten years of professional related experience, Three years of which is at the chief fire officer or supervisor level in planning, developing and delivering fire service training. Possess excellent oral and written communication skills and hold a strong commitment to high quality with a detail orientation.

Preferred Qualifications: Preference may be given to those applicants who possess, in addition to meeting the minimum training & experience requirements, possess one or more of the following:
Minimum five (5) years of professional level experience as a fire chief with responsibilities which included planning, developing, coordinating, supervising, budget preparation and allocation.
Experience as a Training Officer/Instructor-Coordinator of firefighter training programs with responsibility of planning, scheduling, and coordinating curriculum development and instruction.
Established work history of completing comprehensive projects on-time and within budget. 
Demonstrated ability to plan, organize, and manage multiple program areas with attention to detail and ability to problem solve and prioritize.
Possession of a baccalaureate degree from an institution of higher learning accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
Other Remarks: Selected candidate subject to criminal records background and drug screening clearance.

To Apply: Submit required application and supplemental documents to Human Resources – GPSTC; 1000 Indian Springs Drive; Forsyth, Georgia 31029, or email application packet to employment@gpstc.org OR fax to (478) 993-4229 no later than 5:00 p.m. of the deadline date. Contact (478) 993-4411 with any questions.

Application Requirements: 
State of Georgia Application for Employment (completed & signed) 
Resume (Optional to those providing sufficient detail in application to describe duties performed in current/past employment.) 
Copy of DD214 (as applicable) Initial screening: Submitted application & documents will be reviewed to determine those applicants selected for interview appointment.

Link to Job Application: www.gpstc.org/careers GPSTC is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

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Roster/Reports for Cancer Bill

Posted September 15, 2017
We have emplemented a new report on our website to make it easier to gather information for the Cancer Bill.  When you log in to our site, click on Reports at the top of the page, under Reports, click on View Firefighter Expense Responsible Department.  This is will give you a list of everyone in your department that we have in our system.  The information listed on this page is what is required by ACCG.  This report also shows other departments they are listed with.

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Georgia Firefighter's Cancer Program

Posted August 28, 2017

Georgia Firefighters’ Cancer Program Offered through GMA and ACCG Insurance Programs                                                                                                                                                        
For a firefighter diagnosed with cancer, nothing is more important to their recovery than the peace of mind knowing they are supported by their family, friends and the community they serve.  A diagnosis of cancer places a financial strain on individuals and families since not all related expenses are covered by insurance.  
Medical costs – deductibles, copays, out of network treatments ‐ often grow beyond family budgets.  And, a firefighter who cannot return to employment will likely suffer a loss of income while struggling to recover their health.   
In 2017, the Georgia General Assembly, recognizing the need to support its 35,000 firefighters and their families, passed HB 146 creating a cancer program for eligible Georgia firefighters.  This unique initiative, designed to bridge financial gaps following a cancer diagnosis, allows a firefighter to focus on healing.

The cancer program, covering both eligible employed and volunteer firefighters, has two primary components:
Lump‐sum Cancer Benefit – This benefit, paid upon the diagnosis of cancer, can be used in any fashion – everyday living expenses such as utilities, groceries, or rent ‐ to meet the financial needs of a firefighter at a difficult time.  
Income Protection – Disability insurance helps to make certain a firefighter will still receive a portion of their income when they are absent from work for an extended period due to a cancer diagnosis.
The Georgia Firefighters’ Cancer Program offered through ACCG and GMA satisfies the requirements of HB 146, which goes into effect on January 1, 2018.  The Program is affordably priced and provides eligible Georgia firefighters the coverage they earn every day as they protect the citizens and property in the cities and counties of the State of Georgia.

Georgia Firefighters’ Cancer Program Offered through GMA and ACCG Insurance Programs Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Is a group cancer program being established?
A. Yes, a program will be provided through the Georgia Municipal Association for municipalities and through the ACCG Insurance Program for counties. Group purchasing helps all participants obtain lower pricing and makes it easier for them to be in compliance regarding the valuable benefits for firefighters. Private entities may access the same program via Willis Towers Watson.

Q. May an entity purchase only the critical illness coverage OR the income replacement coverage from the Georgia Firefighters’ Cancer Program depending on its needs for coverage?
A. Yes, an entity may purchase only one of the two required coverages if that is all  that is needed.  

Q. How does the critical illness or lump‐sum supplemental medical benefit   work?
A. The lump‐sum benefit provides a payout for a diagnosis of cancer based upon severity of the condition. For severe forms of cancer, the payout is $25,000. For less severe forms of cancer,  the payout is $6,250. There are  types of pre‐cancerous conditions which would not qualify for a payout. Details will be provided in future materials distributed to the firefighters.

Q. Does the lump‐sum benefit pay for more than one diagnosis of cancer?
A. Yes, the eligible firefighter may receive up to $50,000 (maximum of $25,000 for each diagnosis) in lifetime lump‐sum benefits.  

Q. May the firefighter take the benefit with them when they leave service?
A. Yes, the firefighter may keep the lump‐sum benefit provided they have not already exhausted their $50,000 limit. An eligible firefighter may also convert the income replacement coverage to individual coverage. The firefighter must pay the contribution to continue coverage.

Q. How does the income replacement benefit work?
A. The benefit starts 6 months after the date a firefighter is determined to be disabled due to cancer. For employed firefighters, the monthly benefit is 60% of their pre‐disability earnings to a maximum of $5,000.  For volunteer firefighters, the monthly benefit is a flat $1,500.  

Q. How long does the income replacement benefit last?
A. Provided the firefighter is deemed disabled, the maximum benefit duration is 36 months.

Q. If the firefighter is receiving income from other sources, is the monthly benefit reduced?
A. Yes.  The monthly benefit will be reduced based on the other sources of income.

Q. If a firefighter owns a privately  purchased insurance policy paying benefits in addition to those received under the program, would the Program monthly benefit be reduced?
A. No, the benefit will not be reduced provided the firefighter purchased a privately owned policy (i.e., not one offered on a group basis through their employer).
For more information, contact an ACCG or GMA representative, or email: gfcp@willistowerswatson.com.

Georgia Firefighters’ Cancer Program Offered through GMA and ACCG Insurance Programs Contribution FAQ 

This document provides examples detailing how entity contributions should be paid under GMA and ACCG’s Cancer Program. If necessary, contact GFCP@willistowerswatson.com for guidance. Please be certain to provide your contact information to schedule a follow-up call. If you prefer to speak with a Program representative, please contact Lindsey Albright at 404 224 5044 or Meghan Murray at 404 302 3898. Refer to the Program FAQ for information on the plan features and administration. HB 146 requires all legally organized fire departments to provide specific cancer insurance coverages for all employed and volunteer firefighters. Coverage is available through GMA and ACCG for entities meeting the definition of “Municipality” or “County” under O.C.G.A. § 36-85-1.

Employed Firefighters
Employed with One Fire Department


Q. Who would pay the contribution for an employed eligible firefighter with at least 12 months of consecutive employment as a firefighter working solely for one entity?
A. The entity that pays the firefighter’s salary would pay the contribution.

Employed with One Fire Department and Volunteers at Second Location

Q. Who would pay the contribution for an employed eligible firefighter with at least 12 months of consecutive employment as a firefighter at one entity and volunteers at another entity?
A. The entity that pays the firefighter’s salary would pay the contribution according to HB 146.

Employed with more than One Fire Department

Q. Who would pay the contribution for an employed eligible firefighter with at least 12 months of consecutive employment as a firefighter for more than one entity?
A. Each entity will be responsible for the contribution, but at a reduced rate. Subject to the plan maximum, all salaries as an employed firefighter would be combined to determine the disability benefit.

Volunteer Firefighters
Volunteer Firefighter at Single Location


Q. Who would pay the contribution for an eligible volunteer firefighter with at least 12 months of consecutive service as a volunteer solely for one entity?
A. The entity where the firefighter volunteers would pay the contribution. Volunteer Firefighter at Multiple Locations

Q. Who would pay the contribution for an eligible volunteer firefighter with at least 12 months of consecutive service as a volunteer for more than one entity?
A. Each entity will be responsible for the contribution, but at a reduced rate.

Private Firefighters (Non-municipal and non-county entities)

Q. Who is the contact to quote coverage for private firefighters?
A. Contact Willis Towers Watson via GFCP@willistowerswatson.com. Please be certain to provide your contact information to schedule a follow-up call.

Georgia Firefighters’ Cancer Program Offered through GMA and ACCG Insurance Programs
Program FAQ
This document provides information on GMA and ACCG’s Georgia Firefighters’ Cancer Program (GFCP). For additional questions, contact GFCP@willistowerswatson.com, and provide your contact information to schedule a follow-up call. If you prefer to speak with a Program representative, contact Lindsey Albright at 404-224-5044 or Meghan Murray at 404-302-3898. Refer to the Contribution FAQ document for help on how entities will be billed for the statutorily required benefits. General Information about HB 146 (2017)

Q. What is the purpose of HB 146 (2017)?
A. It provides employed and volunteer firefighters with monetary assistance in the event that they are diagnosed with cancer. The term “firefighter” is defined by O.C.G.A. § 25-4-2.

Q. What are the required benefits?
A. There are two separate, independent requirements relating to a diagnosis of cancer for eligible firefighters: a critical illness requirement and an income replacement requirement. Firefighters employed by and/or volunteering for multiple departments are not entitled to receive multiple benefit payments. However, if an individual is employed as a firefighter with multiple entities, total wages earned from all entities are considered when calculating the monthly disability benefit.

Q. When does the legislation become effective?
A. The effective date is January 1, 2018.

Q. How do I know if my entity is required to comply with this legislation?
A. If your entity has a legally organized fire department that employs firefighters or utilizes volunteer firefighters, it is subject to the legislation and is required to provide the benefits.

Q. Who determines if an entity has complied with the provisions of the Act?
A. The Georgia Firefighter Standards and Training Council promulgates the rules and regulations governing the Act and what constitutes compliance.

Q. Is a claim for cancer diagnosed prior to January 1, 2018 eligible for coverage?
A. No. Only compensable cancer illnesses diagnosed on or after January 1, 2018 will be eligible.

Q. Must a firefighter have served continuously for a period of time to be eligible?
A. Yes, a firefighter must have served 12 consecutive months with their fire department to be eligible.

Q. If a firefighter works as an employed firefighter in one location and a volunteer firefighter in another location, would that firefighter be eligible for coverage in both locations?
A. No. HB 146 (2017) states that the employer is responsible for coverage in this instance.

Features of the Cancer Program Provided Through GMA and ACCG

Q. Is a group cancer program being established?
A. Yes, a program will be provided through the Georgia Municipal Association for municipalities and through the ACCG Insurance Program for counties. Group purchasing helps all participants obtain lower pricing and makes it easier for them to be in compliance regarding the valuable benefits for firefighters. Private entities may access the same program via Willis Towers Watson.

Q. May an entity purchase only the critical illness coverage OR the income replacement coverage from the Georgia Firefighters’ Cancer Program depending on its needs for coverage?
A. Yes, an entity may purchase only one of the two required coverages if that is all that is needed.

Q. How does the critical illness or lump-sum supplemental medical benefit work?
A. The lump-sum benefit provides a payout for a diagnosis of cancer based upon severity of the condition. For severe forms of cancer, the payout is $25,000. For less severe forms of cancer, the payout is $6,250. There are types of pre-cancerous conditions which would not qualify for a payout. Details will be provided in future materials distributed to the firefighters.

Q. Does the lump-sum benefit pay for more than one diagnosis of cancer?
A. Yes, the eligible firefighter may receive up to $50,000 (maximum of $25,000 for each diagnosis) in lifetime lump-sum benefits.

Q. How much time must separate multiple diagnoses to allow for more than one payout?
A. The firefighter must be symptom-free for 180 days between diagnoses.

Q. May the firefighter take the benefit with them when they leave service?
A. Yes, the firefighter may keep the lump-sum benefit provided they have not already exhausted their $50,000 limit. An eligible firefighter may also convert the income replacement coverage to individual coverage. The firefighter must pay the contribution to continue coverage.

Q. How does the income replacement benefit work?
A. The benefit starts 6 months after the date a firefighter is determined to be disabled due to cancer. For employed firefighters, the monthly benefit is 60% of their pre-disability earnings to a maximum of $5,000. For volunteer firefighters, the monthly benefit is a flat $1,500.

Q. How long does the income replacement benefit last?
A. Provided the firefighter is deemed disabled, the maximum benefit duration is 36 months.

Q. If the firefighter is receiving income from other sources, is the monthly benefit reduced?
A. Yes. The monthly benefit will be reduced based on the other sources of income.

Q. If a firefighter owns a privately purchased insurance policy paying benefits in addition to those received under the program, would the Program monthly benefit be reduced?
A. No, the benefit will not be reduced provided the firefighter purchased a privately owned policy (i.e., not one offered on a group basis through their employer).

Q. Are both benefits taxable?
A. Both benefits are taxable under the IRS as the firefighter’s employer is paying for the coverage.

GFCP Program FAQ Ed. 8/24/2017

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Public Hearing and Council Meeting August 23, 2017

Posted August 17, 2017
The Public Hearing for the Proposed Rules Changes and the Council Meeting will be held in the Cypress Room at the Hilton Garden Inn, Athens Georgia during the Fire Service Conference.  The meeting will begin at 10:30 am. 

Agenda for the Council Meeting
Introduction of members and guests
Establish Quorum
Approve minutes of last meeting (7/11/2017)
Public Comment concerning GFSTC Rules Possible changes regarding HB 146
Vote concerning GFSTC Rules changes
Executive Director Gordon Henderson - Written Report (to include status of fighterfighter medical physicals)

Old Business
New Business

Next Council Meeting - Tuesday, October 10, 2017

 

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Public Hearing and Council Meeting Location

Posted August 15, 2017
The Public Hearing for the Proposed Rules Changes and the Council Meeting will be held in the Cypress Room at the Hilton Garden Inn, Athens Georgia during the Fire Service Conference.  The meeting will begin at 10:30 am. 

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Public Hearing for Proposed Rules Changes

Posted August 2, 2017
As a reminder of the announcement made at the July 11th GFSTC Council Meeting, there will be a Public Hearing held on the Proposed GFSTC Rules Changes.  The Public Hearing will be held at the Fire Service Conference,  August 23, 2017 at 10:30 am at the Hilton Garden Inn across from the Classic Center in Athens.  The room will be announced at a later date.

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NPQ APPLICATION

Posted August 1, 2017
There is a problem with the NPQ applications, please DO NOT print them until we post a notice that they are correct.  This should be corrected by the end of this week.

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DO NOT USE ONLINE CHANGE OF STATUS

Posted July 31, 2017
The online change of status no longer works.  If you have submitted an online change of status that you have not printed out and sent to us, please do so as soon as possible.  The notice below was put on our website under the News section on January 6, 2017.    Please DO NOT USE the online change of status.  If you need to add/remove people to you roster and don't know how to do it on the new system please call our office and we will be glad to help you.

 

Change of Status Reports

Posted January 6, 2017
Many of you know know that our database has been having issues for a year.  If any of you submitted online change of status, please print those off and fax them to us at 478-993-4511 if you haven't already.  That information is lost and can't be brought over to the database.  We are working hard on getting everything entered that has been submitted by paper form to us.  It will take us some time to get caught up.  They tell us the new database will be going live by the end of January.  PLEASE DO NOT ENTER ANY ONLINE CHANGE OF STATUS UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. 

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Notice of GFSTC Rules & Regulations Changes

Posted July 19, 2017
Below are the proposed changes to the GFSTC 2016 Rules & Regulations. The changes are to “205-1-2-.02 Minimum Requirements for Fire Departments“ lines 250-331. The changes are in sections (4) and (5) from line 287 thru line 321. The wording that is in bold and unlined is what is proposed as additions and the strike-through wording is what is being proposed to be removed.
Please review the proposed changes and forward any comments you may have to the Gordon Henderson ghenderson@gfstconline.org at the GFSTC office.

205-1-2-.02 Minimum Requirements for Fire Departments
  1. Recognizing that fire departments operating in the State of Georgia cannot function effectively and efficiently as full-time fire departments without meeting or exceeding the minimum requirements established by Official Code of Georgia Annotated, Title 25, Chapter 3 - Article 2.  It is the intent of these Rules & Regulations to establish the minimum requirements for all fire departments operating in this state in order to receive a Certificate of Compliance. 
    1. Legally organized fire departments shall be established as an entity of the State of Georgia or a political sub-division of the State of Georgia (a city, county, board, etc.)
    2. Legally organized fire departments may exist as a private corporation incorporated either for-profit or not-for-profit through the State of Georgia Secretary of State and has a written contract to provide fire and emergency services with one or more local governments in Georgia.
  2. No fire department shall exercise the general and emergency powers set forth in O.C.G.A. §25-3-1 and §25-3-2 without obtaining a Certificate of Compliance issued from the Georgia Firefighters Standards and Training Council.
  3. Fire departments operating in the State of Georgia shall be established to provide fire and other emergency and nonemergency services in accordance with the applicable state laws, local government ordinances, and the minimum standards specified by the Georgia Firefighter Standards and Training Council.  These fire departments shall:
    1. Be capable of providing fire protection 24 hours a day, 365 days per year.  Understanding the nature of the fire service in the State of Georgia, this may be accomplished through the use of mutual-aid or automatic-aid agreements with neighboring fire departments.
    2. Be responsible for a defined area of operations depicted on a map located at the responding fire station(s).  This area of operations as depicted on the map shall have been approved and designated by the governing authority of the applicable county, municipality, or other political subdivision in the case of any county, municipal, or private corporation fire department.
    3. Be Staffed with a minimum number of trained Volunteer Suppression or State Certified Firefighters who have successfully completed basic firefighter training as specified by the Council.
1.   Minimum Staffing shall be four (4) Volunteer Suppression or State Certified Firefighters per station.  An average of six (6) members per station, of which 2 of the 6 may be Volunteer Support Firefighters, is recommended. The minimum number of firefighters will be calculated as an aggregate total for the entire department.
2.   Each firefighter must be at least 18 years of age.
3.   Each firefighter must be duly appointed by a legally organized and compliant fire department.
(4) A legally organized fire department shall purchase provide and maintain insurance coverage in accordance with Code section 25-3-23(b) in a sufficient amount for coverage on each member of the fire department to pay claims for injuries sustained enroute to, during, and returning from emergency calls, disasters, scheduled training sessions and other department-required activities. Upon cancellation or reinstatement of any policy for the coverage of each member of the fire department, the Executive Director of the Georgia Firefighter Standards and Training Council shall be notified immediately.
(a) ACCG members shall provide proof of insurance coverage for all personnel the current Estimated Payroll Request form
(b) GMA members shall provide proof of insurance coverage for all personnel the current Estimated Annual Premium form.
(c) Departments using other insurance carriers or means of being self-insured shall may provide a copy of the insurance policy, a council/commission resolution or other proof of insurance coverage.
(5) The GFSTC Compliance Package must be submitted to GFSTC.  In addition to the completed Compliance Application, the department shall include the following documentation:
(a) A defined area of operation for each station shall be depicted on a map not less than 8.5 x 11 shall be filed with the application for a Certificate of Compliance.
(b) A letter from the governing authority of the applicable county, municipality or other political subdivision in the case of any county, municipal or private corporation fire department approving the designated area of authority.
(c) An affidavit from the governing authority of the applicable county, municipality, or other political subdivision in the case of any county, municipal or volunteer fire department indicating the operation of the department’s intent and purpose of carrying out the duties, functions, powers, and responsibilities normally associated with the operation of a fire department and the ability to provide fire protection for the area of operation filed with the application for Certificate of Compliance 24 hours a day, 365 days per year.
(d) A copy of the insurance certificate or proof otherwise of insurance coverage that complies with Code Section 25-3-23(b) in a sufficient amount for coverage on each member of the fire department to pay claims for injuries sustained enroute to, during, and returning from emergency calls, disasters, scheduled training sessions and other department-required activities.    Upon cancellation or reinstatement of any policy for the insurance coverage of each member of the fire department, the executive director of the Georgia Firefighter Standards and Training Council shall be notified immediately but no less than two business days.
  1. Before a fire department may begin legal operations, an on-site review must be conducted by GFSTC Staff to confirm the information contained in the Compliance Package.
  2. Documentation from the Safety Fire Division of the Office of the Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner indicating that the fire department is, and remains, in compliance with the reporting requirements for fires by state law as specified in O.C.G.A. §25-2-32(b) and provided for by §25-3-24.
  3. The Executive Director of the Georgia Firefighter Standards and Training Council shall issue a Certificate of Compliance according to Rules & Regulations and Policy & Procedures of the Georgia Firefighter Standards and Training Council.
Authority. - O.C.G.A. §§25-3-4, 25-3-20, 25-3-22, 25-3-23, & 25-3-24.


 

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COUNCIL MEETING JULY 11, 2017

Posted July 3, 2017
THE NEXT MEETING OF THE GEORGIA FIREFIGHTER STANDARDS AND TRAINING COUNCIL IS SCHUEDULED FOR TUESDAY, JULY 11, 2017 AT 8:30 A.M.  THE MEETING WILL BE HELD IN LRC AT THE GEORGIA PUBLIC SAFETY TRAINING CENTER
 
THE AGENDA ITEMS WILL BE:
 
OPENING OF THE MEETING
ESTABLISH QUORUM
APPROVE MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING
AGENCY UPDATE
HB 146
REVIEW RULES DRAFT CHANGES
FIREFIGHTER FROM COLQUITT COUNTY VFD FOR STATE CERTIFICATION

OLD BUSINESS
NEW BUSINESS
ADJOURN

THE COUNCIL MEETING FOLLOWING THIS ONE WILL BE TUESDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2017 AT 8:30 AM.

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