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Grants Available to Rural Fire Departments

AMES - The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has grant money available for Iowa's rural fire departments to help with equipment in battling wildfires. The grants offer funding assistance for wildfire equipment, personal protective equipment, money for new dry hydrants and for community outreach programs.

Gail Kantak, fire supervisor with the DNR's forestry bureau, said fire departments will receive information about the grants soon and she is encouraging them to return a National Volunteer Fire Department Survey. Departments returning the survey by Dec. 15 can receive priority points for the Volunteer Fire Assistance grant application.

"It is important for rural fire departments to return the national survey so we can assess the needs and capabilities of our rural fire departments," she said. The survey results will be compiled in a report to Congress.

The grants package, being mailed to each Iowa rural fire department, include:

A safety poster "Wildfires - Different Rules o Different Tools."

Volunteer Fire Assistance Application: 50-50 cost share grants for wildfire equipment with a maximum grant of $3,500 per department. Applications are due Dec. 15.

Big Rivers Forest Fire Management Compact: A 50-50 cost share for personal protective equipment. The cost share for Iowa is limited and available on a first come, first served basis. Contact Gail Kantak at 515-233-1161 for funding availability.

Dry Hydrant Grant Application: A 50-50 cost share program to establish new dry hydrants. The maximum cost share is $2,000 per dry hydrant. Applications are due by Dec. 15.

National Volunteer Fire Department Survey: In coordination with the National Fire Plan and in an effort to assess the needs and capabilities of the nation's rural fire departments, the National Association of State Foresters have asked each state to compile information about the nation's rural fire departments. The information is compiled and reported to Congress. The survey is due by Jan. 15, 2004. Departments who return a completed survey by Dec. 15 with their Volunteer Fire Assistance Application will receive priority points.

Iowa DNR Forestry Bureau Fire Program Opportunities: Outlines the programming opportunities available to Iowa's fire suppression agencies by the Iowa DNR forestry bureau in cooperation with federal, state and local partners.




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