Springfield, Ill. (WEHT) – Three local fire departments in Illinois are receiving funds from a grant announced by The Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal (OSFM). The 2022 Small Equipment Grant Program distributes a total of $2.5 million to 104 fire departments and districts and EMS providers across the state.

The program was established to provide grants of up to $26,000 each for the purchase of small firefighting and ambulance equipment. Some fire departments and not-for profit ambulance services have trouble in finding funds to purchase small equipment.

“All communities deserve safety, and this program helps ensure our smaller and rural fire districts aren’t left behind when it comes to the tools they need to do their jobs,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “I’m proud to be able to provide more than 100 districts with new lifesaving equipment. It’s another way we can demonstrate our gratitude for all that they do to help their neighbors live safely.” 

The purpose is to allow eligible applicants the opportunity to purchase small equipment that they may otherwise not be able to purchase. The OSFM received 373 applications with a total around $8.4 million requested in funding for this grant period.

“Funding provided from our Small Equipment Grant Program is a huge benefit, especially to our rural volunteer departments in the state. These funds allow departments to purchase important equipment their firefighters/EMT’s need to work more effectively and safely while protecting the lives and property of their community members,” said Illinois State Fire Marshal Matt Perez. 

“The Small Equipment Grant Program is one of the best investments the Fire Marshal’s Office can offer. It gives a financial incentive to many small fire departments, that struggle with the costs of all the needed equipment each fire department is required to have so they may operate safely,” said Carrier Mills Mayor Tracy Felty.

Most Illinois fire departments, fire protections districts, township fire departments and stand-alone nonprofit ambulance service providers were eligible to apply. All fire departments, fire protections districts and township fire department applicants were required to have participated in the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS) for a minimum of two years prior to applying.

Grant recipients and awards for Tri-State departments are listed below:

Wabash:
Mt. Carmel Fire Department– $25,160.01.

Wayne:
Wayne Fire Protection District #1– $21,628.93.

White:
Village of Crossville– $15,300.