New legislation aims to help volunteer shortage at NC fire departments

BURKE COUNTY, N.C. — Local fire departments say they are struggling to find new volunteers.

Channel 9’s Dave Faherty learned lawmakers are looking at ways to incentivize people to sign up. The legislation is called House Bill 565, and it’s aimed at helping departments like Drowning Creek Fire in Burke County.

At one time, they boasted dozens of volunteers. But recently, they got down to just 13.

“I’ve been in on it going on 51 years,” said Capt. Ricky Conger with Drowning Creek Fire. “The chief’s been there for 38 years. And we don’t have a whole lot of young people.”

>> In the video at the top of the page, the changes that would be made if the bill became law.

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