WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Barbara A. Mikulski (both D-Md.) today announced that the Jacksonville Volunteer Fire Company (JVFC) has been awarded $166,667 in federal funding through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) program to purchase a new brush truck. As the Vice-Chairwoman of the Appropriations Committee, Senator Mikulski fights each year to increase federal funding for the fire grants program. Senator Cardin is a member of the Finance Committee.
“The men and women of the Jacksonville Volunteer Fire Department face a unique set of challenges as they put their lives on the line to protect their community,” said Senator Cardin. “I am proud to fight for the federal investments that help make sure the first responders safeguarding our families make it home safely to their own. It is a matter of national security that the federal government is a strong partner with our local first responders and the people they protect.”
“I know how important this funding is to Maryland communities – often it’s the difference between life and death. First responders protect our homes and communities, and the federal government has a responsibility to protect them by providing them with the tools they need to do their jobs safer and smarter,” Senator Mikulski said. “Every day when our first responders report for duty, they don’t know what they will face. That’s why I fight every year for the equipment, training, and staffing our protectors and communities deserve.”
JVFC will use this federal funding to purchase a brush truck that will be able to carry water. The area serviced by the JVFC currently does not have hydrant access. The truck will increase access to rural areas that are generally inaccessible by larger trucks. The new truck will replace equipment which is over 30 years old. For more information, please contact Stephen Stelmack at 410-887-7780.
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is an important component of the larger, coordinated effort to strengthen the Nation’s overall level of preparedness and ability to respond to fire and related hazards. Since 2001, the AFG has provided approximately $6.1 billion in grants to first-responder organizations to obtain much-needed emergency response equipment, personal protective equipment, firefighting and emergency vehicles, and training. During fiscal year (FY) 2014, the AFG will award $304.5 million to first-responder organizations that need support to improve their capability to respond to fires and emergencies of all types.
Since 2001, Maryland fire departments and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) units have received nearly $162 million in fire grant funding, of which more than $16 million has been awarded to fire departments in Baltimore County.