Jessica OrbonJan 11, 2018, 7:40 pmJan 12, 2018, 3:09 pm

Secaucus town council votes to allow non-US citizens to volunteer for fire department

Mayor Michael Gonnelli said that people with years of firefighting experience were being prevented from doing a job they love

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SECAUCUS — The Secaucus Town Council voted unanimously earlier this week to change a municipal law that prevented non-U.S. citizens from joining the town's volunteer fire department.

"If you're here legally," said Mayor Michael Gonnelli, "why wouldn't you let someone volunteer their time to serve as a firefighter?"

Gonnelli, a former Secaucus fire chief himself, said that the law had been preventing people with years of experience as a firefighter from doing a job they love.

The town reexamined the law after two men who are not U.S. citizens but are legal permanent residents attempted to become volunteer firefighters.

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