City of Beacon, NY
Dutchess County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Council of the City of Beacon 5-2-1994;[1] amended in its entirety 8-6-2012 by L.L. No. 18-2012. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Fire Advisory Board — See Ch. 32.
Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code — See Ch. 119.
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Ch. 31, Fire Department, adopted 1-17-1972 as Art. II of Ch. 10 of the 1972 Code of Ordinances, as amended.

§ 31-1 Composition.

The Fire Department of the City of Beacon shall consist of a Fire Chief, one or more Assistant Chiefs and any companies and staff as may be determined from time to time by the City Council.

§ 31-2 Qualifications for Assistant Chiefs.

A. 
Any Assistant Fire Chief must be a resident of the City of Beacon.
B. 
Any Assistant Fire Chief shall have such qualifications as deemed appropriate in the discretion of the Fire Chief.

§ 31-3 Powers and duties of Chief and Assistant Chiefs.

[Amended 11-17-2014 by L.L. No. 14-2014]
The Fire Chief and Assistant Fire Chiefs shall have full and absolute power at all fires and other incidents to order and direct all firefighters in the operation of fire apparatus and equipment for the purpose of extinguishing fires and other incidents, and the protection of persons and property threatened by fire and other incidents. They shall perform such other duties and possess such other powers as shall be prescribed by the City Administrator as they pertain to the operation of the Fire Department. It shall be the duty of the Fire Chief to maintain all fire and rescue apparatus in peak working condition at all times. The Fire Chief shall report to the City Administrator annually, during the month of January, all alarms for the previous year and at other times, as the Fire Chief may deem necessary and proper. The Fire Chief shall compile reports and any other information required by the City Administrator as needed. The Fire Chief shall have the authority to adopt, approve, revise, and maintain written Fire Department rules and regulations that shall include, at a minimum, the annual maintenance policy for the Fire Department apparatus and equipment, a minimum number of required drills for the Department and the individual companies, minimum qualifications for the line officers of the companies and any other procedures and policies deemed appropriate by the Fire Chief. The Fire Chief will be responsible for preparing and submitting a budget for the Fire Department during the third quarter of the year.

§ 31-4 Fire companies.

[Amended 11-17-2014 by L.L. No. 14-2014]
The Beacon Engine Company, Mase Hook and Ladder Company and Lewis Tompkins Hose Company shall continue as already constituted, and they may alter and amend their constitutions, bylaws and regulations for their government, subordinate, however, to the Charter, City Code, rules and regulations, policies and ordinances of the City and Fire Department. They shall, at any time, upon the request of the Mayor, the City Council or the City Administrator, present their records for review by the Mayor, the City Council and the City Administrator. New companies may be organized under this chapter by consent of the City Council.

§ 31-5 Fire company officers.

[Amended 11-17-2014 by L.L. No. 14-2014]
A. 
All Captain(s) and Lieutenant(s) shall be under the direction of and appointed by the Fire Chief. In the absence of the Fire Chief or his assistants from any fire or incident, the chain of command as described in the Fire Department Rules and Regulation will determine who is in command of the Fire Department.
B. 
There shall be one or more Captain(s) and Lieutenants(s). The Fire Chief shall set minimum qualifications for Captain(s) and Lieutenant(s). Each fire company shall submit the name or names of any qualified candidate(s) to the Fire Chief for each available Captain(s) and Lieutenant(s) position. The Fire Chief shall select the Captain(s) and Lieutenant(s) from the names provided, subject to ratification by the Mayor and the consent of a majority of the City Council.

§ 31-6 Notification; ratification of firefighters; roll book.

[Amended 11-17-2014 by L.L. No. 14-2014]
A. 
The secretary or other proper officer of each company shall report to the Chief, or his or her designee, in writing, the names of any members of the company who have ceased to be firefighters by resignation, removal or otherwise.
B. 
The names of persons being recommended for appointment as firefighters shall also be submitted to the Chief, in writing. The Chief shall submit the appropriate application to the City Council for ratification. After ratification by the City Council, firefighters shall be issued badges by the City. These badges shall be returned to the City upon resignation or whenever a firefighter leaves the Department.
C. 
The City Clerk shall maintain a roll book, open for public review, containing the names of all firefighters, their respective company and their badge number.

§ 31-7 Certificates of exemption; records.

[Amended 11-17-2014 by L.L. No. 14-2014]
Certificates of exemption shall be granted to those members of the Fire Department in accordance with the New York State General Municipal Law § 200.

§ 31-8 Qualifications for membership.

[Amended 11-17-2014 by L.L. No. 14-2014; 7-6-2015 by L.L. No. 6-2015]
A. 
All persons requesting membership in the Fire Department shall fill out the City of Beacon Fire Department - Application for Membership form in their own handwriting and over their own signature.
B. 
The Fire Chief shall cause each application for membership by a person seeking active firefighter status to be investigated. Such investigation shall check for completeness of the application, the applicant's lack of conviction for a felony, medical history (as evidenced by a physician's licensed health-care professional's statement) and personal interview with the Chief.
C. 
No person shall be appointed to membership in the Fire Department who is not a legal resident of the United States.
D. 
Any member convicted of a felony shall be removed from the rolls of the Fire Department.
E. 
All active members shall live within a fifteen-mile radius of the City and be able to render assistance in the time of need.
F. 
All active members shall be at least 16 years of age at the time of appointment as an active firefighter.
G. 
All persons wishing to be appointed as a firefighter shall have a physical exam after being qualified and approved by their respective fire company. This exam shall be prior to their ratification by the City Council, at the City's expense and by the City-designated physician. The examining physician shall verify, in writing, that the candidate meets the requirements for firefighter as outlined in OSHA 1910.156, or as may be amended. Any physical disability affecting a firefighter's ability to conform to OSHA requirements will cause his or her removal from active status.
H. 
All active firefighters shall satisfy state and federal minimum mandated training requirements and any local training and drill requirements established and prescribed annually by the Fire Chief, or they shall be removed from the active rolls.
I. 
Sixteen- to eighteen-year-old active firefighter applicants (hereafter referred to as "junior firefighters") and their parents shall sign the application for membership indicating that they have read and understand the rules and regulations of the Fire Department as they pertain to junior firefighters.

§ 31-9 Appointments; nominations.

[Amended 12-16-2013 by L.L. No. 23-2013]
A. 
The Fire Chief shall be appointed by the Mayor, subject to the consent of the City Council.
B. 
There shall be one or more Assistant Fire Chiefs, to be known as First Assistant Fire Chief, and so on. The Fire Chief shall set minimum qualifications for Assistant Chief(s). Each fire company shall submit the name or names of any qualified candidate(s) to the Fire Chief for each available Assistant Chief position. The Fire Chief shall select the Assistant Chief(s) from the names provided, subject to ratification by the Mayor and the consent of a majority of the Council.

§ 31-10 Career firefighters and career Fire Chief.

A. 
The career Fire Chief and career firefighters shall be legal residents of the United States. They shall be without a record of felony conviction.
B. 
No person shall perform the duties of the Fire Chief unless he or she is a resident of the City of Beacon or resides no more than 30 miles from the nearest boundary line of the City. Notwithstanding the foregoing, any requirement with respect to residency or location from the City applicable to the Fire Chief shall be at the Mayor's discretion, subject to the consent of a majority of the Council.
C. 
All career firefighters, other than the Fire Chief, shall reside within a fifteen-mile radius of the City of Beacon.
D. 
Names of eligible candidates for the position of the career Fire Chief or career firefighter shall come from the Dutchess County Civil Service List. Notwithstanding the foregoing, persons already or previously employed as a career Fire Chief or career firefighter in another municipality shall also be eligible for the position of the career Fire Chief and career firefighter as a lateral transfer as long as all civil service and local qualifications are satisfied.
E. 
It shall be the duty of the career firefighter on duty to respond to all alarms as dispatched. Additional firefighting duties, as the incident dictates, may also be undertaken.
F. 
It shall be the duty of the career firefighters assigned to each station to maintain said station according to the Fire Department Rules and Regulations and to report any and all problems with the fire apparatus or station to the Fire Chief or Assistant Chiefs as appropriate.
G. 
Minimum training for career firefighter shall consist of those requirements as stated in Chapter XII, Office of Fire Prevention and Control, Part 426, New York Code of Rules and Regulations, and the Executive Law § 159-d.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Executive Law § 159-d was repealed by L.2010, c. 56, pt. B, § 29-a, effective 7-1-2010.

§ 31-11 Charges of neglect of duty or disobedience.

[Amended 11-17-2014 by L.L. No. 14-2014]
A. 
Any volunteer firefighter may be suspended from the Fire Department by the Fire Chief for incompetence or misconduct.
B. 
Charges seeking removal of any volunteer firefighter shall be handled pursuant to General Municipal Law § 209-l and the applicable Fire Department Rules and Regulations.
C. 
The provisions of this section shall not affect the right of members of any fire company to remove a volunteer officer or voluntary member of such company for failure to comply with the constitution and bylaws of such company.
D. 
Career firefighters shall be subject to discipline in accordance with Civil Service Law and contractual procedure.

§ 31-12 Fire Inspector.

The Mayor of the City of Beacon, with the consent of the City Council, shall appoint a Fire Inspector whose duty it shall be to enforce the New York State Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code and any other local laws and ordinances as prescribed and approved by New York State.

§ 31-13 Police.

[Amended 11-17-2014 by L.L. No. 14-2014]
A. 
There shall be one or more Fire Police. The Fire Chief shall set minimum qualifications for Fire Police. Each fire company shall submit the name or names of any qualified candidate(s) to the Fire Chief for Fire Police position(s). The Fire Chief shall select the Fire Police from the names provided. The duties of the Fire Police shall consist of the enforcement of the provisions of the fire ordinances contained in Chapters 31 and 119 of this Code, of Articles 120, 145, 240 and 400 of the current Penal Law, of § 50 et seq. of the Multiple Residence Law and of the applicable sections of the Vehicle and Traffic Law of the State of New York, as they may be amended; and the performance of such duties as may be assigned to them by the Fire Chief.
B. 
All members of the Fire Police shall take an oath of office as a fire policeman in the following form: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support the constitution of the United States, and the constitution of the State of New York, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of fire policeman of the . . . fire company according to the best of my ability.” Such oath shall be filed in the office of the City Clerk.