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New Year Brings New Deductions for Volunteer Firefighters

One department in Pulaski County says the law won't help its crews very much.
PULASKI COUNTY, AR -- A new state law gives volunteer firefighters an income tax deduction up to $1000.

But, it's not going to be a lot of help to most Pulaski County volunteer firefighters.

The deduction is only on required equipment and loss of personal property, but the assistant chief, at the Arch Street Fire Department, says his volunteers wouldn't qualify for either of those deductions.

The volunteer firefighters at that department don't use their own stuff and they buy things, like equipment and gear, with money from state grants.

A couple of fundraisers a year also help out the Arch Street Department.

So, the people working there likely wouldn't use a tax deduction.

What the assistant chief says would be more helpful is assistance with recruiting volunteers.

Right now, he says they only have about 12 active volunteer firefighters, and they would like to have between 30-35.

Assistant Chief Burkie Hollenberger said, "Every volunteer fire department goes through this about once or twice a year where people say 'I want to be a firefighter' and then they start into it and realize they have to spend a lot of time away from their families."

The Arch Street Fire Department plans to start advertising for new volunteers next week.

If you're interested in helping out, you must apply in person at the department on 15923 Arch Street.

You can also call (501) 888-4162 for more information.

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