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Bill extends grant funding for area fire departments

Bill extends grant funding for area fire departments

January 13th, 2018 by Staff Reports in Local News

A bill signed this week by President Donald Trump will extend funding for grant programs to local firefighters and emergency responders, including the Jefferson City Fire Department.

The bill, backed by U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Missouri, will extend funding for grant programs to local firefighters and emergency responders.

JCFD was awarded a $274,461 Fire Act Grant in 2016. The city had to match $27,446.

This money is being used to fund communication and technology needs in the department.

Fire officials said they are putting in new radios and portable radios in the department’s trucks to expand communication capabilities during emergency responses. They are also installing mobile data terminals in the trucks to allow faster reporting at fire scenes and help during safety inspections throughout the city.

The U.S. Fire Administration, AFG and SAFER Program Reauthorization Act of 2017 reauthorizes the Assistance to Firefighters Grant and Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response programs through Fiscal Year 2024. AFG is intended to protect communities and firefighters from fire-related hazards by providing eligible fire departments the financial support to train, equip and resource emergency personnel. The SAFER program provides funding to fire departments and volunteer firefighter organizations to help increase and maintain the number of trained firefighters in local communities.

The last time JCFD received this grant funding was in 2012-13. Applications are ranked and scored with other departments across the nation on a priority basis.

In Fiscal Year 2016, Mid-Missouri fire departments received more than $950,000 in grant funding through these programs. Other grant recipients included the Missouri Division of Fire Safety based in Jefferson City, the Fulton Fire Department, the Gravois and Rocky Mount fire protection districts, and Meta Fire and Rescue.