Roughly 90 percent of calls to volunteer firefighters are for ambulatory services, according to the Firemen's Association of the State of New York.
"The number one issue is ambulance billing," said Edward Tase of FASNY, when listing the number of issues on the legislative wish list of volunteer firefighters in Western New York.
Currently New York is the only state that does not allow volunteer firefighter departments to bill for their ambulance services.
"Much of my district, volunteer firefighter service, those are your first responders. There aren't any paid or career service," said District 62 Senator Robert Ortt.
EMS calls could run the department more than $300 per trip and it is a resource often used in the most rural parts of Western New York.
"It would cost the state $3.3 billion dollars to replace us so we do have a value to this state," said FASNY Director Edward Tase.
Both Erie and Niagara County firefighters gathered for a meeting Sunday to lobby for legislation that aligns with their value and sacrifice.
"If people are going to take their time away from their families, away from their job, they want to know they are doing so in the safest, best possible way," Ortt said.
FASNY told Spectrum News that improving on safety and adequate compensation could also help with another issue facing the fire service: recruitment and rentention.
FASNY Legislative Committee Chairman Robin Schott, says a new bill is in the works to recruit as early as high school. According to Schott, the bill would allow high school students to take classes at their local and trade school.
"Our philosophy is if we get them in early, get them trained, then we can keep them," Schott said.
FASNY is also drafting other safety bills that would curb the number of rooms landlords can build at a residence. Another bill addresses banning flame retardant chemicals used in furniture.
"The chemicals that are in there now causes carcinogens, which causes cancer," Schott said.