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2024 Candidate For Statewide Offices Questionnaire

Dear Candidate,

The Michigan Professional Fire Fighters Union (MPFFU) is Michigan's largest professional, career fire fighter organization, representing over 8,000 active and retired firefighters and emergency medical workers who live in communities throughout the State.

The MPFFU works diligently to promote legislation which advances the interests and safety of firefighters, paramedics, and emergency medical technicians.  To accomplish this, the MPFFU has always been, and will continue to be, very active in Michigan’s electoral process. 

The Michigan Professional Fire Fighters Union is beginning their endorsement process for the upcoming 2024 elections.  This process requires a completed questionnaire and possibly an interview with the local union or unions in your legislative district.  Although screening of individual candidates occurs at the local level, decisions on endorsements are made by the MPFFU Executive Board with input from the locals. 

It is important to note that the August primary and the November General election are treated separately for endorsement purposes, so additional interviews and recommendations may be required.  Also, an endorsement by the Michigan Professional Fire Fighters Union does not ensure that a financial contribution will follow.

Please return this questionnaire as soon as possible, but no later than June 7, 2024. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at (734) 675-0206.  Thank-you.

* Date:
* Candidate First Name:
Candidate Last Name:
* Office Being Sought
* Campaign Committee Name:
* Campaign Address:
* City/State/Zip:
* Campaign Manager:
* Phone (Home):
* Phone (Campaign):
Fax (Campaign):
* Email (Campaign):
* Incumbent: Yes:   No:
* Political Party:
* Candidate ID: (your candidate ID issued by Secretary of State)

1-Staffing Levels

Staffing levels are critical to fire fighter safety. Inappropriate staffing levels put our fire fighters' safety at risk and the ability to reduce fire loss and protect the public.  The National Fire Protection Association recommends, as part of NFPA 1710, that each company be staffed with four fighters including a company officer, and that the company officer must remain as part of the company; they can’t stay outside of the building as command.  Most of the departments in the state do NOT meet the guidelines of NFPA 1710, leaving our fire fighters and communities vulnerable.

House Bill 4688 currently proposes the inclusion of fire department staffing as a mandatory subject of bargaining. This means that discussions and negotiations regarding fire department staffing would be required to take place. No mandates, and no specific staffing models would be mandated. It simply allows for the conversation to happen.

For more information on HB 4688, please visit:

Do you support HB 4688?   



2-Paramedic Training

Michigan is experiencing a shortage of Paramedics. The unprecedented shortage has risen year after year for the last decade. Senate Bill 249 in Michigan brings forth the proposition of a Michigan-only Paramedic license. This bill aims to provide an additional avenue for individuals aspiring to become paramedics in the state. 

SB 249 does not change or lower any training requirements, but it simply permits departments and training institutions the ability to provide the training in a quicker and less expensive manner than how it is being done now. 

For more information on SB 249, please visit:

Do you support Senate Bill 249?

YES     NO 


3-Municipal Funding

The COVID-19 crisis has further exacerbated the revenue shortfall cities have been dealing with over the last 20 years. Prior to the pandemic, funding local governments received from revenue sharing has diminished by more than $8.6B dollars - click here for report.  This coupled with the restrictions to property tax growth due to challenges with Proposal A, have prevented communities from realizing the economic recovery happening in the state.  Communities across the state have made difficult decisions in balancing budgets through reduction of services, consolidation of programs and cuts to employee benefits.  Michigan’s citizens have 2,400 fewer fire fighters in their communities since before 2011.  This is not a safe trend for our communities.

State level funding needs to be addressed by the legislature.  Revenue sharing needs to be restored and changes to the property tax act must occur to give the opportunity for our communities to fully restore core services.

Do you support finding ways to increase revenue to local governments through reforms to the property tax act and revenue sharing?

YES    NO 


4-PTSD Presumption

The recognition of the emotional challenges facing fire fighters while at work has become more and more prevalent.  The fire service has had more deaths annually by suicide than in the line of duty.  This is unacceptable and is why the MPFFU has been stepping up to develop greater resources to help our first responders deal with their mental health.  Currently, if a first responder is diagnosed with PTSD it is not considered a job-related injury unless the employee can prove it came from a specific incident. But PTSD is an exposure-based injury and does not come from just one incident.  It’s from repeated exposures which makes it difficult to prove.  It is time that our communities recognize that Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome is the result of the work that first responders do day in and day out protecting our communities.  Therefore, a presumption is needed to ensure that our firefighters are taken care of while facing injuries from exposure at work.

Do you support establishing PTSD presumption under the Workers Compensation Act for all first responders in Michigan?

YES    NO 


5-Collective Bargaining Rights

The Public Employee Relations Act (PERA – PA 336 of 1947) allows for collective bargaining, which is a process where employee representatives, through their unions, negotiate contracts with their employers to determine their terms of employment, including pay, benefits, hours, leave, job health and safety polices. 

Collective bargaining has a long and successful history in the fire service. When fire fighters, fire chiefs and management work together to address issues, it makes for a more productive workplace and improves public safety. Studies have shown that communities that promote labor-management cooperation enjoy more effective and more efficient delivery of emergency services. Despite productive labor-management cooperation in most of our communities across the state, the legislature has eroded these rights through multiple amendments to PERA over the last several years. In a short-sighted attempt to reduce costs, some policy makers want to abolish collective bargaining to make it easier to cut pay and benefits. 

Would you support continuing the rights afforded to fire fighters under The Public Employee Relations Act (PERA – PA 336 of 1947) to bargain with their employers over workplace issues?

YES     NO 


6-PA 312 – Binding Arbitration

Fire fighters perform essential services, protecting the safety of the public, therefore it obviously is unlawful for fire fighters to use a labor stoppage as a tool in collective bargaining.  As a way of leveling the playing field, Michigan adopted Public Act 312 in 1969. PA 312 which provides for binding arbitration to settle disputes between labor and management.  When an impasse occurs at the bargaining table between labor and management, Public Act 312 is utilized to break the impasse. An arbitrator will hear evidence from both sides and then issue an award to one side or the other, resolving the impasse.  This award is binding on both parties. While 95% of all contracts are settled without the need for binding arbitration, it remains a very important tool for both labor, management and ultimately the safety of the public.  This method has worked very well through the years, which is why the MPFFU strongly advocates that this act remains in place.

PA 312 was amended in 2011 to require the arbitrator to consider a community’s ability to pay as the first factor in the negotiation.  PA 312 has served communities over the years to provide a responsible and balanced approach to resolving disputes.

Do you support the continuation of PA 312?

YES     NO 


7-Healthcare Benefits (Active Duty)

Fire fighters in the state of Michigan are subject to PA 152.  Under Public Act 152, a city can opt into a Hard Cap model (which caps the dollar amount an employer will pay for healthcare premiums and passes costs on to the employee if they exceed the cap) or the 80/20 model (the employer pays 80% of the premium and the employee pays 20%.  Despite the enactment of Public Act 152 and the cost sharing contributions from firefighters, we continue to see employers erode healthcare benefits for firefighters both in active duty and retirement, resulting in reduced benefits and increased employee contributions.  Healthcare is one of the most important benefits for a fire fighter.  The job they do demands having the protection in place to care for themselves if they end up injured because of their profession.  The cost shifting has led to recruitment and retention issues in the fire services.

Do you support reform to Public Act 152?

YES     NO 


8-Healthcare Benefits (Retirees)

Municipalities in the state of Michigan are required to maintain funding levels above 60% in OPEB accounts (Other Post Employment Benefits) which fund retirement healthcare for firefighters.  As a result of legislation, reduction in revenue sharing, and the desire to eliminate legacy costs, nearly all firefighters hired today in the State of Michigan have lost the ability to earn healthcare in retirement from their municipality. Today, nearly 75% of all Line of Duty Deaths are cancer related.  With firefighters constantly exposed to PFAS in their turnout gear, routine exposures to toxic chemicals such as hydrogen cyanide in today's fires, and the lack of adequate staffing forcing firefighters to do more with less, firefighters at the end of their career need medical attention to address the toll the career has taken on their bodies after decades of service and sacrifice.  Do you agree that retired firefighters deserve healthcare benefits?

YES     NO 

If elected, what would you do to address the lack of access to affordable healthcare in retirement for firefighters? 


9-Fire OPS 101

Occasionally, the MPFFU and/or IAFF locals host Fire OPS 101.  This is a 1-day experience where IAFF Professional firefighters host local leaders and put them in scenarios that firefighters face on a regular basis to help anyone outside the profession understand the job and gain more knowledge and experience to assist in understanding the needs of firefighters, and their departments. This may include training burns, vehicle extrication, EMS scenarios, search and rescue, forcible entry etc. 

Would you be willing to participate in Fire OPS 101, if one was made available?

YES     NO 


1651 Kingsway Ct., Suite E
Trenton, MI 48183

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