Petrarca announces grants for volunteer fire companies in Armstrong, Indiana counties to combat wildfires

VANDERGRIFT, July 21 – An Armstrong County volunteer fire company and one in Indiana County were awarded grants designed to help rural communities guard against the threat of wildfires, state Rep. Joseph Petrarca announced.

Petrarca, D-Westmoreland/Armstrong/Indiana, said the grants were offered through the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and were awarded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service. In Armstrong County, the Leechburg Volunteer Fire Company was awarded a grant of $7,500. Saltsburg Volunteer Fire Department was awarded a $8,353 grant.

“Our rural communities, including those near our state forests or situated near undeveloped areas, will certainly benefit from these grants,” Petrarca said. “These funds will help firefighters with equipment purchases or specialized training to keep our residents and property safe.”

Departments in communities with fewer than 10,000 residents are eligible for the grants, and recipients were selected based on vulnerability and adequacy of existing fire protection criteria. The grant program has awarded more than $14.5 million since its inception in 1982.