HARRISBURG – The PA Senate approved a bill that would enable the state to hire more part-time fire instructors by removing a hurdle standing in the way. Senate Bill 423 would allow retired state employees to serve as part-time, state-certified fire instructors while continuing to collect their state pensions. The retirees’ part-time service as fire instructors would not enhance their pension benefits. Currently, state workers who retire and begin collecting a pension through the State Employees’ Retirement System cannot return to work for the state, including as a fire instructor, without halting their pension payments. Bill sponsor, Blair County Sen. Judy Ward said many retired fire instructors have years of experience they could share with newer firefighters, but current pension rules prevent them from doing so. The bill now heads to the PA House.