COLLEGE STATION – Several Texas Legislators and more than 30 Legislative staff members participated in the Annual Legislative Day at the Municipal Fire School on July 23. The event was sponsored by the State Firemen’s and Fire Marshals’ Association (SFFMA), the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) and the Texas A&M Forest Service (TFS).
Legislators attending the event included Rep. Kyle Kacal, Rep. John Raney, Rep. Drew Springer, and Rep. Ed Thompson. David Shoemaker from the Governor’s Office also attended.
“We always look forward to opportunities, especially with legislators, to show the great training going on at the fire field and elsewhere in the agency,” commented TEEX Director Gary Sera. “These opportunities are invaluable for helping key audiences understand exactly what TEEX does.”
The group traveled from Austin or their home jurisdiction to College Station where they viewed firefighting apparatus, the TFS mobile incident command center and equipment used by Texas Task Force 1. They then toured the TFS Emergency Operations Center and heard overviews from TFS and TEEX officials.
Following lunch with agency officials, they toured Brayton Fire Training Field and Disaster City®. While there, they viewed the hands-on training under way at the 85th Municipal Fire Training School, met with constituents from their districts and had the opportunity to bunker out and fight a controlled fire on one of the props. They also viewed a side-by-side burn demonstration of a residential interior mockup with and without a fire sprinkler system.
“Our third legislative day, held every other year during non-legislative years, highlights the accomplishments we have made in emergency services,” said Chris Barron, Executive Director of the SFFMA. “This event brings the lawmakers together with the emergency responders to learn about our profession, the challenges we face, and the tools and equipment used to put out fires and train firefighters. This type of event benefits everyone from the local level to the state agencies and those making the laws that affect us.”