Congressman Gonzalez Encourages Local Fire Departments to Apply for FEMA Staffing Grants

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Texas Border Business

WASHINGTON – Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15) is encouraging local fire departments and volunteer interest organizations to apply for funding through the Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grant Program. SAFER is funded through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The application period began Friday, February 15, 2019, and will continue until 5 p.m. EST/ 4 p.m. CST on Friday, March 22, 2019. 

The SAFER grant program seeks to assist local fire departments with staffing and deployment capabilities to better respond to emergencies and assure communities have adequate protection from fire and fire-related hazards.

“Knowing that fire departments have the necessary funding, training, and staff to address any fire-related issue gives our residents peace of mind,” Congressman Gonzalez said. “I advise local fire departments to apply for FEMA’s SAFER grant program so that they may continue providing vital first-responder services to the 15th District of Texas.”

SAFER is composed of two activities: Hiring and Recruitment and Retention of Volunteer Firefighters. FEMA will award grants directly to volunteer, combination, and career fire departments to help the departments increase the number of frontline firefighters in the fire department. The Recruitment and Retention of Volunteer Firefighters activity creates favorable working environments for volunteer firefighters to encourage current volunteers to continue with their volunteerism as well as entice new volunteers to join. 

Career fire departments, combination fire departments, and volunteer fire departments are eligible to receive funding for the hiring of firefighters. Combination fire departments and volunteer fire departments are eligible to receive funding under the recruitment and retention activity. National, state, local, or tribal organizations are also eligible for recruitment and retention funding. Career fire departments may NOT receive funding under the recruitment and retention activity, and statewide or local organizations may NOT receive funding under the hiring of firefighters activity.

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The Notice of Funding Opportunity and technical assistance documents for this program are available at www.grants.gov <http://www.grants.gov/>, and at http://www.fema.gov/staffing-adequate-fire-emergency-response-grants. Eligible applicants may also seek additional information by contacting the SAFER Help Desk from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. CST, Monday – Friday, by calling 1 (866) 274-0960, or by email at mailto:[email protected].

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