Florida State Requirements

Volunteer fire departments in Northwest Florida may see some disastrous effects when a new state requirement is passed.

Ponce de Leon Operations Chief J. R. Brookshire, says he is worried that new legislation could cause his department to fold.

All volunteer firefighters in Florida will be required to complete, and pass, 160 hours of first responder qualifications.

Chief Brookshire says it's a good idea, but it costs about a $1,000 per person to take the class. It’s money that small towns like Ponce de Leon simply don't have.

The chief says he believes since the responder class will be a state mandate, the Florida legislature should come up with most of the money.