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Congresswoman Barbara Comstock

Representing the 10th District of Virginia

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Comstock Votes To Support Volunteer Fire Departments

January 12, 2015
Press Release

Washington, DC - Congresswoman Barbara Comstock (R-VA) issued the following statement on the passage of Protecting Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Responders Act.  This legislation passed the House today unanimously:  

“Volunteer Fire Departments are an integral part of our community and this legislation will protect them from unfair burdens due to Obamacare,” said Congresswoman Barbara Comstock.  “Many of our citizens especially in the western part of the District rely on emergency services through Volunteer Fire Departments.  I am grateful that this legislation passed so that Volunteer Fire Departments across the District can continue to serve the public twenty-four hours a day, seven-days a week.”   

H.R. 33 amends the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to ensure that volunteer hours worked by qualified emergency service volunteers are not counted in the determination of full-time employees or equivalents of a given employer for the purposes of the employer mandate under Obamacare.  The Obamacare employer mandate requires all businesses with 50 or more full-time or full-time equivalent employees, defined as more than 30 hours per week, to provide employer-sponsored insurance.  H.R. 33 is functionally identical to H.R. 3979, the Protecting Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Responders Act of 2014, which passed the House with a vote of 410-0 in March of 2014.