Washington, D.C. – The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the United State Fire Administration (USFA) have received approximately 19,950 applications for the 2003 Assistance to Firefighters Grant program. The total request of all departments, including the non-federal share, is around $2.5 billion. For the 2003 program, Congress appropriated, and President Bush signed into law, $750 million in direct assistance in support of the nation’s firefighters and the services they deliver.
“Through President Bush’s leadership, there is twice as much money this year to help firefighters respond to all types of emergencies-from the common to the complex,” said Michael D. Brown, Under Secretary of Homeland Security for Emergency Preparedness and Response. “Making sure firefighters have the proper equipment, resources, training and community support to safely respond to emergencies is critical to helping us meet our mission to better secure the homeland.”
The USFA Grants Program office staff has completed their early review of applications and the peer review panels began the week of April 21, 2003. The peer review panels are expected to take three weeks to complete the entire review of applications. DHS, FEMA and the USFA look forward to making the first award announcement in early June.
“Fire service personnel have once again come together to identify the necessary equipment and resources they need to better serve their communities,” said R.David Paulison, USFA Administrator. “Although we had a one week delay at the beginning of the application process, it now appears we will be making our first announcements almost a month ahead of the 2002 program. This positive pace is due to the efforts of the Nation’s firefighters.”
A complete state-by-state listing of applications, financial information and known data from the fire service requests can be found at http://www.usfa.fema.gov/inside-usfa/03requests.cfm.