Community

Grant funding, wildland fire training available to qualified fire districts and fire departments

The state Department of Natural Resources will award grant dollars this fall to eligible fire districts and departments through the Wildland Fire Assistance Grant Program that is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Application deadline is Oct. 29.

“These grant funds help fire districts and departments in rural communities acquire the equipment and training necessary to battle wildfires in partnership with state and federal firefighters,” Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark said in a press release.

In Washington state, DNR administers the Wildland Fire Assistance Grant Program, which is open to all fire districts and fire departments serving communities less than 10,000 residents. Fire districts and fire departments serving communities with more than 10,000 residents may qualify, providing their service area includes a rural area or rural community with a population of less than 10,000.

Funding can be used for such things as refurbishing vehicles obtained through the Firefighter Property Program, fire equipment, fire prevention materials, training, clothing, equipment, and some communication devices. Interested fire districts can find detailed information, including downloadable grant applications, on the DNR website.

Ready reserve wildland fire training
DNR also sponsors Ready Reserve Wildland Fire Training with support from the U.S. Department of Interior. Through this program, fire districts may be eligible for:

— Wildland firefighting courses taught in your community at no cost and with a minimum registration of 15 students.

— Instruction by qualified instructors.

Fire protection districts and departments that are not eligible may still register students, but may be required to assist with providing an instructor and materials.

Opportunities for this training may be available to fire protection districts and departments in Washington State that:

— Have volunteer members.

— Serve communities with a population of 10,000 or fewer residents.

— Border on or include a U.S. Department of Interior agency (Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, Bureau of Indian Affairs, and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service) within its protection area, OR currently have a Wildland Fire Response Agreement with a Department of Interior agency.

Interested districts can find detailed assistance program information on the DNR website.

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