A Southwest Pennsylvania lawmaker wants to use money from a special fund to shore up the finances of volunteer fire and emergency medical agencies.

The office of Rep. Pam Snyder, D-Jefferson, said Friday that she expects to introduce legislation that would create a grant program for those departments. Snyder said in a statement the COVID-19 outbreak means that those entitled “are unable to conduct regular fundraising efforts to stay active.”

“My bill would provide this one-time vital assistance to help these first responders keep answering the call for help,” she added in a statement.

The one-time, automatic crisis grants would be funded by $30 million from the Volunteer Companies Loan Fund.

Snyder said the state’s dipped into that fund in the past, using it to balance the budget in 2014 and 2016.

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