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State to support vol. firefighters

By Tamas Mondovics

First responders, including members of the two Johnson County law enforcement, JC Emergency Management Agency, JC Rescue Squad as well as the nine volunteer fire department enjoyed the spotlight and a much-deserved recognition earlier this month. The timing to assist such heroes, couldn’t have been better considering an announcement by Tennessee State Representative Timothy Hill’s (R-Blountville) office last week confirming the results of an effort to secure funding to help local fire departments equip and train volunteer firefighters across the state.

According to State officials, House Bill 518 creates a program, known as the volunteer firefighter equipment and training grant program, to annually provide grants to select volunteer fire departments to be used for the purchase of firefighting equipment or to meet local match requirements of federal grants for the purchase of firefighting equipment and training.

“Many of our rural communities rely on volunteer firefighters to protect them from all
forms of harm,” Hill said. “House Bill 518 will establish a state-funded grant program to ensure our local heroes have the proper equipment and necessary training to protect their neighbors.
This is the first program of its kind and will finally find a way to help our heroes.”

Local volunteer fire departments include Butler, Doe, Dry Run, Laurel (First District), Mountain City, Neva, Second District, Shady Valley, and Trade.

Timothy Hill is Chairman of the House Commerce Committee. He is also a member of the House Calendar & Rules Committee, as well as the Business, Utilities, Banking & Investments, and Life & Health Insurance Subcommittees. Hill represents Tennessee House District 3, which includes Johnson, and part of Carter and Sullivan Counties. Hill can be reached by email at [email protected] or by calling (615) 741- 2050.