Volunteer emergency-service groups in Benalla can apply for grants of up to $150000 from the state government to help buy operational equipment and fund minor facility upgrades.
Applications are now open for the 2018-19 round of Volunteer Emergency Services Equipment Program (VESEP) funding.
Under the program, the government matches every $1 paid by volunteer groups with a $2 co-contribution, with the government this year increasing its maximum contribution from $100000 to $150000.
State Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes has urged local groups to apply for the grants.
‘‘The Volunteer Emergency Services Equipment Program helps provide our hard-working volunteers with the equipment they need to respond to emergencies and keep Victorians safe,’’ Ms Symes said.
‘‘We have a number of great volunteer emergency-service groups in our region and it is important they apply for these grants, so we can give them the equipment they deserve.’’
More than $13.34 million in government contributions are available in 2018-19, including:
●almost $9.8 million for volunteer CFA brigades;
●more than $2.1 million for Victoria State Emergency Service units;
●more than $320000 for Marine Search and Rescue, including the Australian Volunteer Coast Guard Association;
●almost $800000 for Life Saving Victoria clubs; and
●more than $350000 for other volunteer agencies.
VESEP grants can be used to help fund operational equipment, including the purchase of new vehicles, trucks, tankers, watercraft and trailers.
Volunteer groups can also put the money towards minor facility improvements.
●For more information about the VESEP and to find out how to apply for a grant, visit emv.vic.gov.au/vesep