The Williams Lake Fire Dept. is one of several in the Cariboo-Chilcotin being awarded government funding for training and equipment. (Monica Lamb-Yorski - Williams Lake Tribune)

Cariboo-Chilcotin fire departments recipients of provincial funding

The province is providing $5 million for equipment and training

Several fire departments in the Cariboo-Chilcotin are receiving funding for equipment and training through the province’s community emergency preparedness fund.

The Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General announced $5 million in funding Friday, noting the funding is being distributed through the Union of BC Municipalities.

Receiving the funds are 100 Mile House ($21,280), Cariboo Regional District ($115,910), Horsefly Volunteer Fire Dept. ($25,000), Likely and District Volunteer Fire and Rescue ($25,000), Tsilhqot’in National Government ($150,000), Wells ($25,000) and Williams Lake ($25,000).

Read more: First Nations and non-First Nations community forge relationship in spirit of reconciliation

“Volunteer and composite fire departments are vital public safety partners in B.C.’s local and First Nations communities,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “This funding for new equipment and training will support dedicated fire crews at more than 100 of these fire departments as they continue their work to keep communities safe.”

A total of 102 proposals were submitted for the newly-established funding.

“It’s great to see so many communities take advantage of this funding,” said Jennifer Rice, Parliamentary Secretary for Emergency Preparedness. “It’s our hope that these funds will help build resiliency across B.C. by ensuring local governments and First Nations have the tools they need to be ready for all hazards.”

Though the maximum amount of funding per applicant is $25,000, in many cases, regional districts submitted proposals involving many societies and fire departments. That means that in some cases, hundreds of thousands of dollars are going to regional districts to be further distributed.

Read more: Williams Lake Fire Department training 14 new recruits

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