State offers $3.5M funding to Illinois fire, rescue agencies

The office of the State Fire Marshall is accepting applications for its Small Equipment Grant Program.

The $3.5 million program provides grants of up to $26,000 for the purchase of small firefighting and ambulance equipment for Illinois departments. This includes items such as self-contained breathing apparatuses, backboards and communication equipment.

Applications are due by Feb. 29.

The program is particularly helpful to smaller fire and ambulance agencies which are unable to generate revenue to update equipment. The program is open to most fire departments, fire protection districts, township fire departments and non-profit, stand alone ambulance services.

To be eligible for funding, fire-protection agencies must have participated in the National Fire Incident Reporting System for a minimum of two years before applying.