Leeds and Thousand Islands backs call for better firefighter benefits

Photo via Township of Leeds and the Thousand Islands

The Township of Leeds and the Thousand Islands council is supporting a call for better volunteer firefighter benefits.

The municipality of Wawa has called on the federal government to increase tax credits for volunteer firefighters.

This was brought forward to TLTI council as information during Monday’s council meeting.

The ask is for an increase in the credits from $3,000 to $10,000 for people who complete at least 200 hours of volunteer time every year.

Coun. Jeff Lackie requested a letter of support from the township to be sent to the municipality of Wawa in support of the increase. This was unanimously approved by council.

“From a firefighter standpoint it would certainly help out to enable our volunteers who put in those 200 hours and, maybe often, put in more than 200 hours, to recognize their work and give them a nice incentive,” said chief administrative officer Stephen Donachey.

Fire Chief Mike Prior backed the increase.

“There’s lots of fire departments out there that are not like Leeds, they do not compensate,” said Prior.

“There’s lots of fire departments that don’t compensate for fuel, they don’t compensate for any of the clothing that people wear, or any parts of that. This is a big thing, in my opinion, to help those volunteers out within the province.”

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