OTTAWA, Ill. – To ensure fire departments and first responders are receiving proper funding, state Rep. Lance Yednock, D-Ottawa, is highlighting new grants available for volunteer and combination fire departments by the Office of the State Fire Marshal (OSFM).
“All first responders and their resources took a hit during the past year of COVID-19 case surges,” said Yednock “Volunteer and combination fire departments that rely on fundraisers to fund their departments suffered as they were unable to fundraise due to strict COVID-19 social distancing guidelines. These grants give these departments the opportunity to receive the funding they are so desperately missing.”
The Office of the State Fire Marshal is offering $1 million dollars of one-time COVID Assistance Grants for volunteer or combination departments that were financially impacted by the global pandemic. 80 eligible departments will each receive $15,000 in order to make up for lost donation revenues stemming from an inability to host fundraising events during periods of quarantine in 2020. In order to be eligible for the grants, fire departments must be a volunteer or combination department, operate within a jurisdiction of 7,500 people or less, have an annual budget of less than $150,000, have an OSFM ID number and be current with their National Fire Incident Reporting System at the time of application. All applications are due by Aug. 13, 2021. For more information and a complete list of program requirements and eligibility, visit the website https://www2.illinois.gov/sites/sfm/CurrentFocus/Pages/Illinois-Fire-Department-COVID-Assistance-Grant.aspx.
“Several departments within the 76th District can benefit from this program and I’d like to thank the Office of the State Fire Marshal for offering these much-needed grants,” said Yednock. “I highly encourage eligible departments to look more into this opportunity and apply. If my office can be of any assistance, please reach out at 815-324-5055.”