Rep. Sather reminds rural fire companies of funding opportunities

State Representative Larry Sather is alerting rural fire companies about the availability of grant money available from the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ Bureau of Forestry.
The department is accepting applications for grants which are designed to help fund special needs or projects.
According to a press release from Sather’s office, $495,000 in grant money will be distributed statewide. The money will be awarded to departments in rural areas or communities with a population of less than 10,000 residents. DCNR grants have allocated more than $5.5 million in funding for firefighting assistance across the state for more than two decades.
Applications for the program have to be sent to the DCNR’s Harrisburg Bureau of Forestry according to the press release.
The bureau will accept applications until 4 p.m., Friday, June 25. The bureau is also prioritizing requests. Companies seeking assistance in obtaining wildfire suppression equipment and protective clothing will get first priority according to the release.
However, the grant money can also be used for a number of other items or needs. The list includes: mobile or portable radios, installation of dry hydrants, wildfire prevention and mitigation, wildfire fighter training and conversion and maintenance of federal excess vehicles received from the bureau and used for fire suppression.
In 2004, the maximum grant for any fire company is $7,500. All financial aid will be granted on a cost-share basis.
More information on the program is available by calling (717) 787-2925. You can also access the DCNR web site at www. dcnr.pa.us/forestry/ffp/vfagrant.aspx.