(20 ILCS 2910/1) (from Ch. 127 1/2, par. 501)
    Sec. 1. Peace Officer Status.
    (a) Any person who is a sworn member of any organized and paid fire department of a political subdivision of this State and is authorized to investigate fires or explosions for such political subdivision and to determine the cause, origin and circumstances of fires or explosions that are suspected to be arson or arson-related crimes, may be classified as a peace officer by the political subdivision or agency employing such person. A person so classified shall possess the same powers of arrest, search and seizure and the securing and service of warrants as sheriffs of counties, and police officers within the jurisdiction of their political subdivision. While in the actual investigation and matters incident thereto, such person may carry weapons as may be necessary, but only if that person has satisfactorily completed (1) a training program offered or approved by the Illinois Law Enforcement Training Standards Board which substantially conforms to standards promulgated pursuant to the Illinois Police Training Act and the Peace Officer Firearm Training Act; and (2) a course in fire and arson investigation approved by the Office of the State Fire Marshal pursuant to the Illinois Fire Protection Training Act. Such training need not include exposure to vehicle and traffic law, traffic control and accident investigation, or first aid, but shall include training in the law relating to the rights of persons suspected of involvement in criminal activities.
    Any person granted the powers enumerated in this subsection (a) may exercise such powers only during the actual investigation of the cause, origin and circumstances of such fires or explosions that are suspected to be arson or arson-related crimes.
    (b) Persons employed by the Office of the State Fire Marshal to conduct arson investigations shall be designated State Fire Marshal Arson Investigator Special Agents and shall be peace officers with all of the powers of peace officers in cities and sheriffs in counties, except that they may exercise those powers throughout the State. These Special Agents may exercise these powers only when engaging in official duties during the actual investigation of the cause, origin, and circumstances of such fires or explosions that are suspected to be arson or arson-related crimes and may carry weapons at all times, but only if they have satisfactorily completed (1) a training course approved by the Illinois Law Enforcement Training Standards Board that substantially conforms to the standards promulgated pursuant to the Peace Officer Firearm Training Act and (2) a course in fire and arson investigation approved by the Office of the State Fire Marshal pursuant to the Illinois Fire Protection Training Act. Such training need not include exposure to vehicle and traffic law, traffic control and accident investigation, or first aid, but shall include training in the law relating to the rights of persons suspected of involvement in criminal activities.
    For purposes of this subsection (b), a "State Fire Marshal Arson Investigator Special Agent" does not include any fire investigator, fireman, police officer, or other employee of the federal government; any fire investigator, fireman, police officer, or other employee of any unit of local government; or any fire investigator, fireman, police officer, or other employee of the State of Illinois other than an employee of the Office of the State Fire Marshal assigned to investigate arson.
    The State Fire Marshal must authorize to each employee of the Office of the State Fire Marshal who is exercising the powers of a peace officer a distinct badge that, on its face, (i) clearly states that the badge is authorized by the Office of the State Fire Marshal and (ii) contains a unique identifying number. No other badge shall be authorized by the Office of the State Fire Marshal, except that a badge, different from the badge issued to peace officers, may be authorized by the Office of the State Fire Marshal for the use of fire prevention inspectors employed by that Office. Nothing in this subsection prohibits the State Fire Marshal from issuing shields or other distinctive identification to employees not exercising the powers of a peace officer if the State Fire Marshal determines that a shield or distinctive identification is needed by the employee to carry out his or her responsibilities.
(Source: P.A. 95-502, eff. 8-28-07.)