U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced North Tonawanda Fire Department will receive $40,644 in federal grants to purchase new protective gear. The funding comes from the FY12 Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program. AFG awards are administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and are designed to help firefighters and other first responders obtain critically needed equipment, protective gear, emergency vehicles, training, and other resources needed to protect the public and emergency personnel from fire and related hazards.
“With this funding, Tonawanda’s first responders can focus on their important work knowing that they have reliable new equipment,” said Senator Schumer. “This investment will help ensure that our local heroes can continue their work and will enable them to respond as effectively and safely as possible with the most up-to-date training resources.”
“This is an important investment for North Tonawanda Fire Department ,” said Senator Gillibrand. “It’s our responsibility to ensure our first responders have the most up-to-date equipment to serve our communities. This funding will help the North Tonawanda Fire Department purchase new computers to improve their existing fire compliance officer training program so their firefighters can help local residents and business owners equip themselves appropriately to prevent fires and help save more lives.”
“We are very happy to be receiving this fire prevention assistance,” said North Tonawanda Firefighter Robert Orlowski. “We will be using this funding to purchase four laptops and the appropriate software needed to train four new fire compliance officers. These new officers will be partake in a 120 hour long fire compliance course that will prepare them to multiple 4 code inspections on local houses and businesses. We will begin this training in the Spring, with hopes of this program lowering the number of fires in our area.”
The North Tonawanda Fire Department will use the federal funds to purchase four new laptops and necessary software to train new fire compliance officers in a 120 hour fire compliance course to help their fire department prevent fires and better serve the community.
The AFG Program assists local fire departments in programs and activities to improve the effectiveness of firefighting operations through specialized emergency training for response to situations like terrorist attacks; enhancement of emergency medical services programs; development of health and safety initiatives; establishment of fire education and prevention programs; creation of wellness and fitness programs; and equipment and facility upgrades.
AFG funds are administered by the Department of Homeland Security Federal Emergency Management Agency in cooperation with the Department’s United States Fire Administration. The grants are awarded on a competitive basis to the applicants that most closely address the program’s priorities and demonstrate financial need. More information on the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program can be accessed at http://www.firegrantsupport.com/ .