CAPE GIRADEAU, Mo. – Foresters with the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) are delivering matching funds grant checks to rural fire departments now through August. One hundred eighty fire departments across the state, 30 in the Southeast region, are receiving checks of up to $3,000 to help with the purchase of personal protective gear and firefighting equipment for use against wildfire and structure fires. According to Forestry Regional Supervisor, Joe Garvey, the total funding for fire department matching grants this year is $371,101.
“These grants are one way the Conservation Department works with communities to improve the economy and quality of life,” Garvey said. “We certainly want to put every effort possible into guarding against the threat of wildfire.”
Garvey said fire departments are required to match these funds, which are provided by the US Forest Service and the MDC. During the last 29 years, over $6.5 million has been distributed to rural fire departments to improve the safety of their fighters and provide them with better firefighting equipment. Some of the equipment purchased by local fire departments with these funds includes mobile and portable radios, pagers, helmets, flashlights, goggles, water pumps.
More information about MDC Forestry programs can be found online at mdc.mo.gov.