Volunteer Firefighters to get better worker’s comp

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MISSOURI — The Missouri Department of Conservation And The Missouri Division of Fire Safety are partnering to pilot a new grant opportunity for volunteer firefighters.

Acccording to MDC, local fire departments respond to nearly 90 percent of wildfires in Missouri and most departments are staffed by volunteers, operating on very limited budgets.

This grant will provide much needed coverage for the times when they’re injured at work.

It will provide a maximum of $2,000 per year, for a three-year period.

The money covers worker compensation and liability coverage for active fire department members.

Gregg Sweeten, Pineville Rural Fire Department, said “Back in 2016, the state law was changed which allows volunteer fire fighter associations to actually receive grant money to pay for their workman’s comp. You know workman’s comp insurance is a pretty high payment each year that the fire department has to make so this is one way of helping us to make that payment.”

Grants will be awarded on a first come, first-serve basis. To be eligible for grant funds, fire departments must have a signed, current mutual aid agreement with MDC.

They must also appear on the DFS roster of registered departments for the application year and remain for the duration of the grant period.

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