Republican candidate for governor Kelly Craft is ringing the alarm for volunteer fire departments.
Craft is promising to work with the state legislature, which controls the state budget, and deliver an additional $5,000 annually to the 520 volunteer fire departments in Kentucky.
“Kentucky’s volunteer firefighters are some of the most selfless people I’ve met when traveling across the Commonwealth. As governor, I’ll work with the state legislature to provide volunteer fire departments across our Commonwealth with an additional $5,000 in funding each and every year,” Craft said in a statement Thursday.
“My commitment to our state’s volunteer fire departments will ensure they have the equipment needed to respond to public safety events in a timely manner. The more effective a fire department is, the lower the community’s home insurance premiums, and lower premiums allow for more money in Kentuckians’ pocketbooks.”
According to Craft’s campaign, of the 21,000 firefighters across the Commonwealth, 17,000 of those are volunteers; of the 686 fire departments across the Commonwealth, 520 of those are volunteer fire departments.
The Kentucky Fire Commission provides $11,500 in funding to qualifying departments. Craft’s plan would increase VFDs’ budgets by over 40%, which can provide for additional training or equipment that departments may need to continue to keep communities across the Commonwealth safe.