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Rural Ohio Fire Departments Receive State Funding

a photo of a firefighter and fire truck
Grant funds will help rural firefighters in Ohio.

More than 65 fire departments serving rural communities in the state are getting a funding boost from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). 

The ODNR’s Division of Forestry recently approved grant funding of more than $410,000 to aid in projects that include investing in personal protection and fire suppression equipment, obtaining utility terrain vehicles (UTVs), and upgrading communication systems, among other projects.

Gregg Guess is assistant chief with the Division of Forestry, He says local fire departments are the front lines for essential services in their communities.

"Rural fire departments protect, by far, the majority of land in Ohio, and the citizens that live out in smaller communities, they depend on these fire departments to provide protection. So, we're trying to supplement the limited funds that they have,” Guess said. 

The funds were made available through Ohio’s Volunteer Fire Assistance (VFA) Grant program, which supports rural fire departments that serve communities with populations of less than 10,000 people.