Member for Macedon Mary-Anne Thomas with Riddells Creek Fire Brigade first lieutenant Jo Thompson, fourth lieutenant Beth White and brigade secretary Gill Metz.

RIDDELLS Creek Fire Brigade will receive a new field command vehicle thanks to a $56,667 State Government grant.

Seven fire CFA brigades in the Macedon electorate will receive grants to the total value of $599,696 to provide operational equipment, vehicles, appliances and minor facility improvements.

Member for Macedon Mary-Anne Thomas announced last week the following brigades would receive funding: Elphinstone, laptop and accessories; Langley-Barfold, station extension; Malmsbury Lithium-Ion positive pressure fan; Spring Hill, ultra-light tanker; Sutton Grange and Myrtle Ck, medium tanker; Trentham, generator; Hepburn Shire SES, chainsaw.

The projects are among 303 grants sharing in more than $14.3 million in funding under the government’s 2020-21 Volunteer Emergency Services Equipment Program.

The annual grants program gives volunteer emergency service groups the opportunity to apply for grants of up to $150,000 to purchase equipment, including vehicles, trucks, tankers, watercraft and trailers, and for minor improvements including refurbishments and amenities, such as kitchens and change rooms. Other operational equipment that can be funded includes chainsaws, generators, quick-fill pumps and inflatable rescue boats and engines.

Ms Thomas said the government matched every $1 paid by volunteer groups with a $2 co-contribution up to $150,000 for each project.

“These grants will give our fantastic hard working volunteers the equipment, vehicles and amenities needed to effectively carry out their duties and keep us safe,” she said

“The Volunteer Emergency Services Equipment Program is an important annual program providing a critical boost to local volunteer units to ensure their equipment, vehicles and facilities are up-to-date.”

Minister for Emergency Services Jaclyn Symes said it was going to be another busy summer season for emergency service volunteers.

“That’s why we’re helping to give them the equipment they need to continue doing what they do best – keeping Victorians safe,” she said.

“These grants have been going strong since they were first set up twenty years ago – communities will continue to proudly contribute to local fundraising efforts, but we want to help reduce that task and demonstrate that we’ll always support our selfless volunteers.”