Yesterday a huge announcement was made by New York Governor Kathy Hochul that will impact volunteer fire departments throughout New York State. The announcement came yesterday as the Governor announced that millions of dollars in capital funding had just been made available for New York State's volunteer fire departments.

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Volunteer Fire Funding Details

When comes to any type of funding, the first question that must be answered is where is the money coming from? Well according to the official press release, the funding is actually coming straight from New York States Fiscal Year (FY) Budget.


In total, the state secured $25 million dollars for the states volunteer fire departments. In addition, the state also secured an additional $10 million dollars that will go towards offsetting the cost for training courses that volunteer fire firefighters are required to take and complete.

Zoonar RF

This announcement goes a long way in regards to Governor Hochul's commitment to strengthening the state's volunteer fire departments. In the announcement, Governor Hochul said...

The volunteer firefighters of New York are selfless public servants who put their lives on the line to keep their communities safe...This funding will go a long way in reminding those who continue to serve that we will always support them in any and every way we can.

Photo by Jay Heike on Unsplash
Photo by Jay Heike on Unsplash

Funding for Volunteer Fire Department Goals

The millions of dollars in funding for New York's volunteer fire departments will be made available through capital grants. The grant's will be administered and issued through the State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services.

Departments can simply apply for their own portion of the allocated grants through requesting an application and then filling out said application. More information on the application process can be found here.

Firefighter wearing a rolled hose

The press release also highlighted three major points that this funding is supposed to accomplish for volunteer fire departments. Those three points are...

  • Ensure fire stations and training facilities are safe, structurally sound, meet current building codes and regulations, and support or promote effective and safe firefighting practices;
  • Support volunteer firefighter safety and health and wellness by providing equipment including personal protective equipment (PPE), decontamination equipment & supplies, and effective exhaust removal systems; and
  • Support consolidation of fire service resources through regionalization efforts to expand above and beyond jurisdictional boundaries to enhance local, county, and statewide response efforts.
Firefighter in truck

Where's the Funding Going?

Lastly, the $25 million dollars that his been dedicated to this program has been separated into two separate funding options. Of that total, $5 million dollars will be going specifically towards upgrading things like personal protective equipment or PPE or communication and rehab equipment.


The other $20 million will be going towards the construction, renovation and purchase projects for fire, sub and joint/shared stations, training towers, classrooms and many other points of need for volunteer fire departments.

It's sometimes very easy to forget about how important our first responders are at every level. Our volunteer firefighters are exceptionally special though, because they literally are choosing to do everything they do. It's literally in the name, they are volunteers.

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New York State Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner Jackie Bray stated it best, calling volunteer fire departments the "...backbone of emergency response in communities statewide...". While it's a tremendous compliment, what these volunteers really are is exceptional. It takes truly exceptional individuals to do what they do and risk what they risk when those calls comes in.

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