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On Thursday, December 19th, Senate Robert Menendez (NJ) introduced the Safe Building Codes Incentive Act.  Senator Menendez was joined by Senators Frank Lautenberg (NJ), Charles Schumer (NY), and Kristen Gillibrand (NY).  The legislation would allow states that adopt and enforce nationally recognized model building codes eligible for an additional 4 percent of funding available for the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP).

"Congress has an opportunity to advance the adoption of building codes in this country," said Bill Webb, Executive Director of the Congressional Fire Services Institute.  "This bill creates an incentive, not a government mandate, for states and local communities to be prepared for the next potential disaster.  As Benjamin Franklin once said - An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

"As President of FASNY and a firefighter for fifty years, our Association salutes Senator Robert Menendez for his introduction, and Senator Chuck Schumer, for his co-sponsorship of the Safe Building Codes Incentive Act which will allow our storm altered state to rebuild with proper building codes dictating  process to make sure that our children and grandchildren are protected against future devastation," said Jim Burns, President of Firemen's Association of the State of New York.

The House version of the bill, H.R. 2069, was introduced by Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart (FL-21) on June 1, 2011.