WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen (both D-Md.) today announced that the Allegany County Department of Emergency Services has been awarded $483,316 from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to hire 4 full–time firefighters. The additional firefighters will that the county can respond to fire and emergency medical service calls throughout the County.
“This grant is a federal investment in Allegany County’s firefighters and residents alike,” said Senator Cardin. “We trust our first responders to protect our homes and our families. In turn, we have a responsibility to ensure they have all the resources – and people – necessary to keep themselves and others safe. This grant helps us live up to that responsibility and keep our fire departments well-staffed.”
“Every day, firefighters in Allegany County and across our state put their lives on the line to protect our communities,” said Senator Van Hollen, member of the Senate Appropriations and Budget Committees. “This grant will ensure that the Allegany County Department of Emergency Services is well equipped to respond to the call for help, whether it’s an accident on I-70, a house fire in Frostburg, or a medical emergency like a heart attack. This investment will help these brave men and women keep our families, homes, and communities safe.”
Funding is available through FEMA’s Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response Grant (SAFER) program. The SAFER grant program enhances the ability of fire departments around the country to attain and maintain 24-hour staffing by providing grants directly to fire departments. Specifically, the grants help fire departments increase the number of frontline firefighters and help rehire firefighters who lost their jobs during the economic downturn. The SAFER program provides approximately $345 million in competitive grants to fire departments and statewide or local volunteer firefighter support groups.