MLAs Malcolmson and Routley say funding will support local volunteer fire departments in Nanaimo, Gabriola, Thetis, and the North Cowichan Valley, keeping people safe

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GABRIOLA ISLAND – New Democrat MLAs Sheila Malcolmson and Doug Routley say that funding announced this week will help local fire departments to protect more people and structures in the region.

“The Nanaimo region has amazing local firefighting teams, supported by volunteers giving their time to our community,” said Sheila Malcolmson, MLA for Nanaimo. “This new funding for local fire departments will get them more of the equipment that keeps them safe and makes the community safer too.”

The following local fire departments are receiving funding:

  • Cowichan Valley Regional District (regional fire partners: North Oyster, Malahat, Mesachie Lake, Sahtlam, Honeymoon Bay, Youbou, and Caycuse) – $210,000 for equipment purchase & training 
  • Cranberry Improvement District – $30,000 for an SCBA air compressor replacement
  • Ditidaht First Nation – $26,000 for the Nitinaht Lake Fire Department
  • Extension Volunteer Fire Department – $30,000 for equipment purchase to enhance fire response capabilities
  • Gabriola Fire Protection Improvement District – $30,000 for SCBA inventory enhancement
  • Nanaimo Regional District (regional fire partners: Coombs-Hilliers, Dashwood, Nanoose Bay, Qualicum Beach) – $119,545.48 for district wildfire response equipment and PPE
  • North Cedar Improvement District – $30,000 for phase 1 wildland equipment purchase
  • North Cowichan – $30,000 for wildland personal protective equipment
  • Thetis Island Improvement District – $30,000 for SCBA upgrade

“Living in a region that’s so susceptible to the effects of extreme weather and climate change, it’s important that our local fire departments are prepared and supported to help out in emergencies,” said Doug Routley, MLA for Nanaimo-North Cowichan. “This funding will support fire departments in our region with purchasing new equipment and will support firefighters on the front lines in our communities with new training opportunities and vital mental health supports.”

Through the Community Emergency Preparedness Fund (CEPF), the provincial government is providing more than $6.2 million for 122 local projects, benefiting more than 200 volunteer and composite fire departments across B.C. Composite fire departments are those that have a mix of staff and volunteers.

Since 2017, more than $17 million has been provided to volunteer and composite fire departments through the CEPF for additional equipment and training.