Rep. Kremer: Works to solve Wisconsin volunteer fire & EMS shortage

Contact: Rep. Kremer
(608) 266-9175 

Madison, Wisconsin – A few bi-partisan rural health bills, authored by Rep. Jesse Kremer (R-Kewaskum), were signed into law by Governor Walker after receiving strong support in both the Assembly and Senate. These bills, all part of Rep. Kremer’s “Rural Fire & EMS (Emergency Medical Services) Reforms” package, came from a 2016 Legislative Council Study Committee on Rural Fire & EMS Shortages Vice Chaired by Rep. Kremer. This committee, comprised of legislative and civilian members, identified, addressed and vetted a series of reforms that the state could provide our rural public safety agencies.

Upon the Governor’s signature of both bills, Rep. Kremer issued the following statement, “After more than a year working with rural first responders, other health stakeholders, and many of my colleagues to craft legislation to bring an end to our volunteer shortage, today’s signing is an exciting moment for rural Wisconsin. I am proud to have had the opportunity to research the concerns of our rural EMS and fire agencies, often left in the shadow of their full time counterparts, and provide them a voice in at the Capitol. As an EMS volunteer myself, it is a privilege and responsibility to champion our first responders”. 

The focus of the Legislative Council Committee was access to training, recruiting and retention challenges and additional flexibilities.  One of Rep. Kremer’s goals was to identify reforms that increase public safety without increasing the financial burden to local and state taxpayers, and both Act 96 and Act 97 all thoroughly achieve this.

“I am certain that these bills will provide additional flexibility to many of our struggling EMS providers who have a desire to provide a higher level of service to the public, but do not always have the ability or funding to do so” continued Kremer. “I look forward to AB356, a bill dealing with EMS refresher education reform, joining its companion bills after being taken up by my Senate colleagues and too being signed into law.”

For more information….

Rural EMS Levels of Service bill language

EMS FAP State Aid bill language

EMS Flexible Refresher Education bill language

Rep. Kremer represents the 59th Assembly District which includes Southern Calumet, Western Sheboygan, Northern Washington and Eastern Fond du Lac Counties. Rep. Kremer’s office can be reached at (608) 266-9175 or by e-mail at Rep.Kremer@legis.wisconsin.gov. His legislative website can be found at www.RepKremer.com.

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