Fire Grants Reauthorization Introduced in Senate

On Wednesday, April 5th, Senator John McCain (AZ), Senator Jon Tester (MT), Senator Susan Collins (ME), and Senator Tom Carper (DE) introduced S. 829, legislation to reauthorize the Assistance to Firefighters (AFG) and Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant programs.  These successful grant programs assist local fire departments in meeting staffing needs, purchasing equipment and training, and implementing fire prevention and safety programs.  

“The Assistance to Firefighters (AFG) and Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant programs are immensely successful programs focused on protecting the public and the nation’s fire service,” said Bill Webb, Executive Director of the Congressional Fire Services Institute. “Given the expanding missions and increased call volumes of fire departments that are necessitating additional equipment, training and staffing, it is absolutely imperative that Congress reauthorize these programs in the First Session of the 115th Congress.  We applaud Senators McCain, Tester, Collins, and Carper for introducing the legislation.  It is now imperative that firefighters across the nation reach out to their Senators and ask them to support this important measure.”

The grant programs are currently authorized through the end of the current fiscal year.  Additionally, the current statute contains a “sunset” provision that will eliminate the programs on January 2, 2018 unless Congress takes action.  The legislation introduced in the Senate eliminates the “sunset” provision and extends the authorization until Fiscal Year 2023.  

Similar legislation is expected to be introduced in the House in the near future.

Read the Bill:
S.829 – A bill to reauthorize the Assistance to Firefighters Grants program, the Fire Prevention and Safety Grants program, and the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response grant program, and for other purposes.

 

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