Today, U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten E. Gillibrand announced that the Jamestown Fire Department will receive $464,364 in federal grants in Round 19 of the FY12 Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program. AFG awards are administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and are designed to help firefighters and other first responders obtain critically needed equipment, protective gear, emergency vehicles, training, and other resources needed to protect the public and emergency personnel from fire and related hazards. The Jamestown Fire Department will use this funding to purchase a new pumper fire engine to replace a 33 year old open cab pumper and will also replace a 20 year old ambulance.
"With this funding, Jamestown first responders can focus on their important work knowing they have a reliable new fire engine and ambulance," said Senator Schumer. "This investment will help ensure that our local heroes can continue their life-saving work and will enable them to respond as effectively and safely as possible."
"This is an important investment for the Jamestown Fire Department," said Senator Gillibrand. "It's our responsibility to ensure our first responders have the most up-to-date equipment, tools and resources to serve our communities. The new fire engine and ambulance will help the Jamestown Fire Department respond to emergencies more efficiently and effectively, and help save more lives."
Schumer was an original sponsor of the legislation that led to the creation of this funding program for local governments and fire departments to help defray the rising costs of equipment and fire prevention. The Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program funds can go towards training, equipment, personal protective equipment, wellness and fitness, and modifications to fire stations and facilities.
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program assists local fire departments in programs and activities to 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 Assistance to Firefighters Grants are administered by the Department of Homeland Security Federal Emergency Management Agency 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.