U.S. Representative Frank A. LoBiondo (NJ-02) today announced that the Dividing Creek Fire Company will receive $13,688 in federal funding while the Elmer Fire Department will also receive $12,293 from the Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program. This is the Dividing Creek Fire Company's third grant, with previous awards of $37,354 (2003) and $17,341 (2004). The Elmer Fire Department is also a repeat recipient with $143,820 previously awarded in 2002.
"The Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program continues to be a critical resource for our small-town, rural community fire companies. Day in and day out, the men and women of our fire and rescue units selflessly put their lives in harms way as the first responders to emergency events," said LoBiondo. "I am pleased that Elmer and Dividing Creek will again receive this federal support - without question, they rightly need and deserve it."
"This funding will allow us to purchase equipment that will be a real asset to the fire company," said Dividing Creek Fire Company Chief John Laws. "It was certainly a great call to get this morning. I want to thank Congressman LoBiondo for any assistance he provided."
To date, 109 of New Jersey's 2nd Congressional District fire and rescue organizations have received more than $18.3 million since the program began in 2001.
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program awards grants directly to fire departments and emergency services to support their efforts to protect the communities they serve. For the 2008 program, Congress appropriated, and President Bush signed into law, $560 million in direct assistance to obtain critically needed equipment, protective gear, emergency vehicles, training, and other resources required to protect the public and emergency personnel from fire and related hazards.
The Department of Homeland Security's Office for Domestic Preparedness (ODP) administers the program, in cooperation with the U.S. Fire Administration. For the last six years, Congressman LoBiondo's office has hosted local seminars for area fire departments to highlight the benefits of this grant program, with the most recent seminar in February 2008.