Today, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer announced that the East Rockaway Fire Department will receive a grant totaling $707,480, the New Hyde Park Fire Department will receive a grant totaling $96,780, and the Great Neck Fire Department will receive $63,580 in Round 17 of the FY10 AFG Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) program. These federal funds, which are administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), will allow these fire departments to strengthen their response programs and promote and maintain 24hour staffing.
"This federal money will help the East Rockaway, New Hyde park, and Great Neck fire departments recruit and maintain competent staff that are capable of quickly and safely responding to emergencies in the area," said Schumer. "These funds will also guarantee that our local heroes have the training, equipment and resources they need to do their job well and that local residents are well protected."
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program (AFGP) provides funding to local fire departments to help them improve the effectiveness of firefighting operations through specialized emergency training for response to situations like terrorist attacks; enhancement of emergency medical services programs; development of health and safety initiatives; establishment of fire education and prevention programs; creation of wellness and fitness programs; and equipment and facility upgrades.
The Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) program is part of Round 17 of the AFG Program and are intended to support the hiring of firefighters and the recruitment and retention of volunteer firefighters. SAFER grants are administered to enhance the ability of grantees to attain and maintain 24hour staffing and to assure that their communities have adequate protection from fire and firerelated hazards. The objective of the Hiring of Firefighters activity is to award grants directly to volunteer, combination, and career fire departments to help the departments increase the number of frontline firefighters. The objective of the Recruitment and Retention of Volunteer Firefighters activity is to create a more favorable working environment for volunteer firefighters. The primary focus of this activity is to enlist and/or retain volunteer firefighters who are trained in the operations of firefighting and emergency response.
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant Programs are administered by the Department of Homeland Security in cooperation with the Department's United States Fire Administration. The grants are awarded on a competitive basis to the applicants that most closely address the program's priorities and demonstrate financial need. More information on the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program can be accessed at http://www.firegrantsupport.com/