Garrison Voters Approve Firefighter Pension Increase

GVFC aligns with other Philipstown fire departments

Residents of the Garrison Fire Protection District voted to approve a request by the Garrison Volunteer Fire Company (GVFC) for a change in its Length of Service Awards Plan (LOSAP) in a special referendum held Tuesday (Dec. 10). Ninety-nine votes were cast in favor of the change while 28 residents voted “no.” Sixteen votes were cast via absentee ballot with the remainder cast at the GVFC fire hall on Route 9.

The LOSAP program provides a pension benefit to volunteer firefighters when they reach retirement age. Tuesday’s “yes” vote will increase that benefit for GVFC firefighters from $10 to $20 per month for each year of service when a firefighter reaches retirement. At the new rate, GVFC firefighters will receive the same benefit that Cold Spring, North Highlands and Continental Village firefighters currently receive.

In an email to The Paper, GVFC Vice President Peter von Bergen thanked voters, “… for coming out during the questionable weather conditions to give the … LOSAP program parity with the other three Philipstown [fire] departments and an opportunity to better attract and, especially, to retain volunteer firefighters.”

The referendum was held under the auspices of the Putnam County Board of Elections, which had four election inspectors on hand at the fire hall. Polls were open from 6 a.m. until 9 p.m.

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