Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $30,181 in federal funding for Lewiston Fire Company No. 1 to purchase a new Jaws of Life to add to their rescue equipment. The funding was allocated through the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program.
“This is an important investment for Lewiston’s firefighters,” Senator Gillibrand said. “Our first responders put their lives on the line day in and day out to keep us safe. We need to make sure that when they are going into harm’s way, they have the right resources for the job so they can respond to emergencies, protect our communities, and save more lives.”
“Lewiston Fire Company No. 1 is grateful to receive funding for this most critical tool, the updating of our Jaws of life,” said Michael Penzotti, Lewiston Fire Company No. 1 Grant Coordinator. “The grant funds will allow us to replace our 25+ year old units that are no longer able to operate on new cars construction and reinforced safety features. We would not have been able to afford these tools without this program. We encourage both our House and Senate to come together to understand the critical needs the Assistance to Firefighters Grants program provides and to assure that future budgets fund this program to past levels in excess of $500 million not its current levels of 2010 and 2011.”
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program, established by FEMA within the Department of Homeland Security, is part of an effort to increase the nation’s emergency response preparation. This program provides federal funding to first responder organizations for the acquisition of personal protective equipment, firefighting vehicles, and emergency response equipment. The funds also help provide emergency response trainings.