NINETY-EIGHTH EDITION
CAL FIRE Local 2881 attends the 2020 IAFF Legislative Conference in Washington DC
E arly last month, CAL FIRE Local 2881 firefighters from up and down the State traveled to Washington D.C. for the IAFF Legislative Conference. This conference allows our L2881 members to sit down with their District Representatives and talk about local, State and Federal level issues that affect our members. They talked about things at the local level as well as State and Federal levels. Building and maintaining these relationships will help our firefighters in our fight for better benefits, wages, and working conditions.

Here are the top issues we discussed with our representatives:

  • Public Safety Collective Bargaining Rights - The Cooperation Act would guarantee public safety officers basic collective bargaining rights in states that do not currently provide them.

  • Supporting Fire Fighter Mental Health - The Helping Emergency Responders Overcome Act of 2019 provides resources to increase prevention, detection and treatment of PTS among emergency responders, provides grants to educate and develop peer counselors and collects data on suicides occurring among emergency responders. 

  • Early Medicare Buy-In for Public Safety Workers - The bill would allow fire fighters, emergency medical personnel and police officers who are separated from service due to retirement or disability the option to buy into Medicare starting at age 50. 

  • Federal Fire Fighter Presumptive Disability - The Federal Firefighters Fairness Act would create a rebuttable presumption that cardiovascular disease, certain cancers and certain infectious diseases contracted by federal fire fighters are job-related for purposes of workers’ compensation and disability retirement. 
Takeaways from Leg Con
"While visiting Washington, D.C., it was an honor to talk with some of the Congress members on House and Senate bill that will protect our members in the near future."

-Robert Carvahlo, MMU, District III Finance Director and first-time IAFF Leg Con attendee
"We, as Union Officers, were able to sit down on a level playing field with our elected officials & discuss topics & help makes changes that keep our firefighters safe across the nation."

-Matt Bernard, MMU Chapter Director and first-time Leg Con attendee
"Not only were we listened to when we met with our representatives, we were heard. 'Good government is the responsibility of all Americans if they wish to remain self-governed' (Thomas Jefferson). This is something that you'll find nowhere else in the world. It was a great privilege to walk the halls and meet with our elected officials. We were able to inform them on the things that matter to our sisters and brothers. Being able to sit down and explain the importance of presumptive illness and behavioral wellness made me grateful to represent Local 2881."

-Joe Ten Eyck, NEU, State Supervisor Director
"The experience of having the direct face to face access with the representatives; being able to express the concerns of our membership and seek support on crucial legislation was incredible. It was encouraging to be able to see the reaction on their faces and have the conversations about our day-to-day working conditions, and to get the positive feedback and the potential for continued relationships and support from the Congressmen and their staff gives me hope of things to come for not only our Local 2881 membership but for the future of all members of the IAFF."

-Jordan Motta, CZU Deputy Chapter Director and first-time IAFF Leg Con attendee
Walking The Halls
Juan Vargas - 51st District
Juan Vargas was Legislator of the Year and has always been a big supporter of CAL FIRE. He even has the axe we presented him at convention hanging in his current office. Juan will continue to support funding Forest Service grants so that our firefighters can continue the fuels reduction projects.
Jim Costa - 16th District
Rep. Jim Costa is a former state lawmaker and is familiar with and sympathetic to the grueling work hours and conditions CAL FIRE firefighters face. We have his support for our benefits, wages, and working conditions.
Doug LaMalfa - 1st District
Doug LaMalfa is an advocate of mental health support for our firefighters. Firefighters were able to sit and talk with LaMalfa for over 45 minutes. They found out he is also a big classic car lover.

Salud Carbajal - 24th District
Salud Carbajal has always been a strong supporter of CAL FIRE and firefighters in general. In fact, he co-authored firefighter legislation with the IAFF. He confirmed he has our backs.
Josh Harder - 10th District
Josh Harder stepped out of a meeting to meet with our members. Public safety is important to him, and he asked about the upcoming fire season. Josh told us to call him whenever we need his support or backing on issues important to our firefighters.
Mike Thompson - 5th District
Mike Thompson has been a supporter of CAL FIRE for many years and helped with legislation when he was working at the State Capitol. Thompson has close ties to the Department. His Staff Chief let us know that Thompson would like to set up future meetings to discuss how he can further assist CAL FIRE.
Scott Peters - 52nd District

Firefighters met with staff from Scott Peters' office to discuss operations in the San Diego region. He has been a strong supporter of CAL FIRE for many years and understands the importance of public safety and wildfire prevention.
Tom McClintock - 4th District

Tom McClintock feels CAL FIRE is the best at what we do and supports mental health for our firefighters as well as Federal firefighter presumptives. PSOB was also discussed due to the recent LODDs, and McClintock's staffer told us they would be taking it to him to consider.
CAL FIRE Benevolent Foundation Events & Fundraiser

POSTPONED: March 14, 2020: St. Patrick's Fundraiser in memory of Mark Domingue at The TARMAC in Atwater, CA. New date will be announced soon!

CANCELED: April 10, 2020: 6th Annual No One Left Behind Golf Tournament at Rancho Del Rey Golf Course in Atwater, CA.

CANCELED: April 30 - May 1, 2020: 8th Annual Golf Invitational & Wine Tasting event at Cache Creek Casino Resort, Yocha Dehe Golf Course. The raffle is still on! Check your mail for the tickets.

CANCELED: August 21, 2020: Annual No One Left Behind Summer Tribute at Half Moon Bay Golf Links.
IAFF Hockey Tournament
P eople always say that the fire service is a small community but when you add hockey, it then it becomes an even smaller close knit community. Over many years of playing hockey in tournaments like the California Firefighter Olympics, I have made friends with players from all over the Country and now into Canada.

This small IAFF Hockey Tournament is played on an outdoor rink at the Apex M ountain Resort outside Penticton, British Columbia. The team consisted of members from, California including CAL FIRE Local 2881, Oakland Local 55, and Seaside Local 1218; from British Columbia including Kitimat Local 1304 and West Kelowna Local 4457; and from Alberta including Fort McMurray Local 2494. 

I was able to trade our new CAL FIRE Local 2881 challenge coins with Kitimat Local 1304 and Fort McMurray Local 2494.

This is an annual tournament usually consisting of about 10 teams. There is also a very large IAFF Tournament that moves around Canada every year and then comes to Los Angeles every few years. We're always looking for players for these bigger tournaments. I regularly play with the Sacramento Fire Hockey Club. We were going to Boston in April, but that has been postponed because of COVID-19.

The whole trip was a great experience. Being able to play hockey outdoors in British Columbia was awesome, but one of the best moments of the trip was getting to hang out, drink some beers, and tell stories with the boys. No matter where you go in the world, you always have the firefighter brotherhood.

If anyone has any questions or is interested in playing they can reach me at  theproudllama@yahoo.com

Bryan Carter, Captain
NEU Chapter
Kitimak Local 1304
Fort McMurray Local 2494
Have you received the single-layer pant yet? Share your thoughts with us via the survey link below.


Helping Your Family Cope With COVID-19

The IAFF debuts its podcast with the first episode in a four part series on the COVID-19 virus.

Mark and Doug discuss the resources available on the state and federal level as COVID-19 spreads. Guests include Elizabeth Del Re, IAFF Assistant to the General President for Grants & HazMat Training and Dave Lang, IAFF Assistant to the General President for Policy & Governmental Affairs.

IAFF Financial Corp Chief Financial Officer Carrie Tucker sits down with Mark and Doug to discuss the recent stock market volatility, how it is affecting retirement accounts and what fire fighters should be doing during this unprecedented time.

Did you know as active and retired members, you can give more through payroll deduction to support organizations who support our families?

Fill out the CAL FIRE Local 2881
Benefit Program Application
Mail completed form to L2881 HQ
CAL FIRE Benevolent Foundation Raffle
Have you received the 2020 CAL FIRE Benevolent Foundation Raffle in the mail? Inside are three raffle tickets to some amazing prizes. The donations collected for this raffle allow the Foundation to continue to support our brothers and sisters and their families during their time of need. With the cancellation of our fundraising events, this raffle is more important than ever.

The drawing will be held April 30 and winners will be notified within 10 days of the raffle.

If you want more tickets please reach out to Wendy ASAP at wpowell@L2881.org

Thank you for your continued support of our Foundation.
Did you just recently retire? Congratulations! Make sure to sign up to be a CAL FIRE Local 2881 Retired Member and stay in the know!

Reach out to Danielle dkelsch@L2881.org
CalHR Savings Plus - Important Changes
CalHR Savings Plus wants all state employees to know about important upcoming changes

Savings Plus is redesigning and customizing its Core Investment Lineup and Target Date Funds. To transition to the new investment fund lineup, Saving Plus is introducing a Reselection Window to give participants an opportunity to make their investment selections. The Reselection Window will open on April 1, 2020, and will close on May 22, 2020. Participants who do not choose their own investments during the Reselection Window will be invested in the Target Date Fund (TDF) that most closely aligns with the year in which they turn age 65. 
 
For more information about the initiative, visit the  Times Change. So Can the Way You Invest   webpage on  savingsplusnow.com .
CalPERS COLA effective May 1, 2020
Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA)
The Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) is a benefit to ensure your value of money at retirement keeps up with the rate of inflation. Typically, this benefit begins the second calendar year of retirement, although the annual rate of inflation and retirement law could affect the onset of your COLA. Under existing retirement law, retirees receive an annual COLA paid in the May 1 warrant each year.
COLA is dependent on three factors:

How COLA Is Calculated
To calculate COLA, CalPERS:

Step 1: Calculates the rate of inflation, based on retirement year.
(Current CPI - Retirement Year CPI) / Retirement CPI = Rate of Inflation

Step 2: Calculates the compounded contracted COLA Provision percentage.
(example based on 2% contracted COLA Provision)
First year of COLA, 2% (no compounding)
Second year of COLA, 2% = 2% x 1.02% + 2% = 4.04%
Third year of COLA, 2% = 4.04% x 1.02% + 2% = 6.12%

Step 3: Uses the lesser of the two numbers from step 1 and 2, this is your COLA factor.

Step 4: Calculates COLA. Base x COLA Factor = COLA

For more info go to https://www.calpers.ca.gov/page/retirees/cost-of-living/cola or call 1.800.225.7377
With  Personal Exposure Reporting from California Professional Firefighters, firefighters can document exposures to toxins that can produce job-related illness.
April 5 is National Deep Dish Pizza Day
Here is a recipe to make your own.
Did you ever wonder about the "pie" in pizza pie? This dish will make that connection clear for you. With its 1 1/2" tall crust cradling distinct layers of cheese, sausage, and tomatoes, this is definitely a knife-and-fork pizza PIE. We like to bake this in a big, 14" deep-dish pizza pan; it makes a spectacular presentation, right out of the oven. But if you don't have a big pan, feel free to use two 9" round cake pans.

Deep-dish pizza has a long history in the city of Chicago, where it's revered as a delicious native invention. The crust, based on a recipe whose supposed provenance is Chicago's Pizzeria Uno, has an unusual flaky/tender texture, and great taste — courtesy of three types of fat: vegetable oil, olive oil, and butter. Also, the tiny bit of cornmeal adds subtle but delightful crunch.

TRAINING UPDATE:
Advanced Leadership/PAC in April and the Member Support 101 in May has been postponed. We will reschedule the training when the State directives regarding COVID-19 change.
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IAFF GP HAROLD SCHAITBERGER
As a result of a routine interaction with medically compromised adults in both community and healthcare settings, fire and EMS personnel are at increased risk for exposure to the coronavirus (COVID-19).

Visit the  IAFF coronavirus resource  for important information and updates.

It is common for the family, friends and coworkers of high-risk individuals to feel on edge during this time. Even if you are not considered to be in a high-risk group, you may experience heightened anxiety if you have a loved one who has been quarantined, tested positive for the virus, is elderly or has a chronic medical condition, faces increased risk due to occupational exposure or who has a history of anxiety, including somatic symptom disorder or health anxiety disorder.

Common Stress Reactions to a Disease Outbreak
Everyone reacts differently to an infectious disease outbreak. While some go about their usual business, others will experience persistent anxiety, worry or fear related to the disease and a range of issues, including emotional, behavioral and physical reactions. If these reactions begin to interfere with your daily functioning, consider talking to a mental health provider.

Reactions may include:
  • Worrying about your own health status
  • Worrying about the health status of your loved ones
  • Sleeping too much or not enough
  • Changes in appetite
  • Inability to fall asleep or stay asleep
  • Difficulty concentrating due to persistent worry
  • Worsening of other chronic health problems
  • Increased time or energy devoted to monitoring physical symptoms
  • Seeking reassurance from family, friends and doctors
  • Increased use of substances to help relax (alcohol, tobacco, drugs or food)

What to Expect If You or a Loved One Is Quarantined
If you think you were exposed to an individual infected with coronavirus, consult your fire department immediately. If family members or loved ones believe they were exposed, they should contact their local health department immediately. Exposed individuals will be required to enter a 14-day quarantine. Individuals in high-risk groups with no history of exposure or current symptoms may proactively choose to avoid interaction with the public or may be directed to do so by their doctor. Quarantine can be a stressful experience. The  Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration  (SAMHSA) reports it is normal to experience some anxiety and worry while under quarantine. Concern may center around a range of issues, including fears of developing the virus or disease, how time off from work may impact your job or finances or how to find care for children or others in your care. You may also fear resentment from friends, family or coworkers who are concerned about their own exposure. In addition, the challenge of securing basic items, such as groceries and personal care items, may produce anxiety.

Is your physical/mailing address updated with us?

Did you get the Fire Front mailed to your home in late November? If not, then we don't have your current address.

It's important for us to have it in case you are impacted or may be impacted by a wildfire or other emergency. Use the link below, call or email us to update it today!

(916) 609-8711 / dkelsch@L2881.org
For The Kids
Fun and Easy Easter Egg Decorating Ideas

Take your Easter egg decorating to the next level by adding jewels, washi tape, colorful dip-dyed designs and more. Your spring tablescape will never be the same.

Check out the ideas here .


From Our Friends

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The BSI Body Scan Program:
The BSI Body Scan program combines thousands of dollars’ worth of medical imaging with a full physician consultation and review. Our proprietary technology utilizing Mobile Telemedicine Vans allows us to provide our program to patients virtually anywhere, with convenient on-site scanning followed by the comprehensive and confidential consultation/scan review into the patients’ home (or workplace, if permissible and appropriate) utilizing our HIPAA-compliant WebEx portal. 

We screen for many diseases of greatest concern to public safety – heart/cardiovascular diseases, lower back and neck pathologies, over 20 different types of cancer, chronic lung disease, and many others. Our personalized service is designed to provide patients with a healthcare experience unlike any other they have previously encountered, which is both highly educational and motivating. Our primary goal is to provide individuals with a preventive examination that will improve the quality and length of their life, while enhancing their productivity and vigor both inside and outside of the workplace. We have numerous success stories on file, and we take great pride in the fact that our main referral source (both individually and organizationally) is our satisfied clientele.

See firefighter testimonials:

Has your marital status changed? Update your L2881 beneficiary information with us today. Fill out this form and send it to Danielle @ dkelsch@L2881.org
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UPCOMING EVENTS


EXECUTIVE BOARD MEETING
JULY 14-16

IAFF CONVENTION
AUGUST 10-14

IAFF FALLEN FIRE FIGHTER MEMORIAL
SEPTEMBER 19

EXECUTIVE BOARD MEETING
SEPTEMBER 23-25

CAL FIRE BENEVOLENT
 FOUNDATION

Provides funds for immediate life sustaining assistance to firefighters and their families who have suffered debilitating injury or loss of life.

For more information or to donate, visit the website .

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CAL FIRE MUSEUM

Have you checked out the CAL FIRE museum website yet?

Don't forget to sign up for their newsletter too!



For more updates, events, and news visit our website: