I would like to make your readers aware of some very important legislation which is currently before our New Jersey State Senate and Assembly. This Fire Wall legislation is in the Senate Budget and Appropriation Committee (S-372) and the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee (A-2055).
This legislation is so vital to all New Jersey communities, but especially so to urban communities where there are many older buildings, constructed before current fire codes, which are attached through lofts, attics or cocklofts.
Under this legislation, barriers which meet acceptable fire-resistance ratings -- fire walls -- would be erected or installed in these buildings. It also calls for the Department of Community Affairs to establish a low-interest rate loan program for owners of these buildings to finance the installation of the fire walls.
Of course, this legislation would have a positive impact on public safety, but also on fire prevention and fire insurance rates in our state.
As the mayor of an urban community in which I see fires travel from one building to another because these fire walls are not in place, I am a strong proponent and supporter of this legislation. I am asking my constituents and all residents and property owners in New Jersey to help me in my support of this legislation by contacting their state representatives and asking for their vote in favor of these bills.
Thousands of families' homes and millions of dollars of property damage could be saved if these bills become law.
Brian P. Stack