(WKBN) – For the last eight months, the Ohio State Fire Marshal’s Office and Governor Mike DeWine created a task force to help improve conditions for volunteer fire services.
Volunteer fire services have many challenges in Ohio, like the need for adequate funding, resources and volunteers.
There are 41 volunteer fire departments in Mahoning Valley alone, and over half of Ohio’s fire departments are staffed with volunteers.
The task force has delivered to the governor a report on recommendations to assist volunteer fire services. The report is a roadmap to continue improving conditions in volunteer recruitment and retention, training issues to enhance volunteer training and financial stability of volunteer fire departments.
“We will develop a series of volunteer recruitment public service announcements. They will focus on the need for volunteer firefighters throughout our communities. We will also waive all training fees for volunteers at the Ohio Fire Academy,” said Ohio State Fire Marshal Kevin Reardon.
Upon passage of the budget, the state fire marshal will begin implementing the new criteria.