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Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER)

SAFER ACT
Number: 97.083
Agency: Department of Homeland Security

Program Information 

Program Number/Title (010):
97.083 Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER)
Federal Agency (030):
Department of Homeland Security
Authorization (040):
Federal Fire Prevention and Control Act of 1974, Public Law 93-498, 15 U.S.C 2229 et seq.
Objectives (050):
The goal of the SAFER Grant Program is to assist local fire departments with staffing and deployment capabilities in order to respond to emergencies, and assure that communities have adequate protection from fire and fire-related hazards.
Types of Assistance (060):
PROJECT GRANTS
Uses and Use Restrictions (070):
Not all fire departments will be eligible to apply. Training, equipment, over-time, and administrative expenses are not eligible. Individuals seeking personal assistance are not eligible. This program is intended to assist fire departments and recognized organizations as identified in the program guidance document and application package; and only those fire departments and organizations as specified in the Funding Opportunity Announcement, are eligible. Funds may be used to recruit, hire, and retain firefighters, but cannot supplant (replace) the applicants funds budgeted for that purpose. Recipients must maintain pre-existing staffing levels and retain grant funded personnel throughout the period of performance. From FY 05 through FY 08, the funds were provided on a sliding scale, recipients must initially match 10 percent of the Federal share the first year. Recipient match increases by certain percentages in the second, third, and fourth years, culminating in 100 percent of personnel costs (per position), in the fifth year and beyond. In FY 09 -FY 13, there was no cap on the federal funds provided for each position and there was no matching requirement. Refer to the Funding Opportunity Announcement for further information. This program is restricted to the jurisdictions/organizations described in the program guidance. For specific information, refer to the Funding Opportunity Announcement. In summary, for the purpose of this program, "State" is defined as the fifty States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. The Alaska Village Initiative, a nonprofit organization incorporated in the State of Alaska, shall also be considered eligible for purposes of receiving assistance under this program on behalf of Alaska Native villages. A "fire department" is defined as an agency or organization that has a formally recognized arrangement with a State, territory, local, or tribal authority (city, county, parish, fire district, township, town, or other governing body) to provide fire suppression on a first-due basis to a population within a fixed geographical area. Fire departments may be comprised of members who are all volunteer, combination volunteer/career, or all career.
Eligibility Requirements (080)
Applicant Eligibility (081):
This program is restricted to the jurisdictions/organizations described in the program guidance. For specific information, refer to the Funding Opportunity Announcement. In summary, for the purpose of this program, "State" is defined as the fifty States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. The Alaska Village Initiative, a nonprofit organization incorporated in the State of Alaska, shall also be considered eligible for purposes of receiving assistance under this program on behalf of Alaska Native villages. A "fire department" is defined as an agency or organization that has a formally recognized arrangement with a State, territory, local, or tribal authority (city, county, parish, fire district, township, town, or other governing body) to provide fire suppression on a first-due basis to a population within a fixed geographical area. Fire departments may be comprised of members who are all volunteer, combination volunteer/career, or all career.
Beneficiary Eligibility (082):
Local or tribal communities serviced by the fire department including, local businesses, homeowners and property owners.
Credentials/Documentation (083):
Applicant must certify that they are an eligible applicant, i.e., a fire department, as described in the program guidance. Refer to Funding Opportunity Announcement document for specific information. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.
Application and Award Process (090)
Preapplication Coordination (091):
Preapplication coordination is required. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. This program is eligible for coverage under E.O. 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.
Application Procedures (092):
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program.
Award Procedure (093):
Applications or plans are peer reviewed and subsequently also reviewed by DHS program and administrative staff. Any issues or concerns noted in the application will be negotiated with the successful applicant prior to the award being issued.
Deadlines (094):
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Range of Approval/Disapproval Time (095):
Refer to Funding Opportunity Announcement document.
Appeals (096):
Applicants that receive an adverse decision or denial, can request reconsideration of the decision. Request for reconsideration must be submitted in writing, to the address contained on the program's website within 30 days of the notification of denial by the administering program office.
Renewals (097):
None.
Assistance Consideration (100)
Formula and Matching Requirements (101):
Statutory formulas are not applicable to this program.
This program has no matching requirements. Refer to Funding Opportunity Announcement.
MOE requirements are not applicable to this program.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance (102):
The hiring grants have a two year performance period for FY13. The recruitment and retention grants are made in one-year increments up to a possible four-year period of performance. Refer to Funding Opportunity Announcement for further details. Awards are subject to the Cash Management Improvement Act for payment and/or reimbursement of expenditures. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Based on project need.
Post Assistance Requirements (110)
Reports (111):
Refer to Funding Opportunity Announcement document. Refer to Funding Opportunity Announcement document. Quarterly progress reports. Quarterly Financial Status Reports. Refer to Funding Opportunity Announcement.
Audits (112):
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503. These audits are due to the cognizant Federal agency, submitted through the Federal Audit Clearinghouse, not later than 9 months after the end of the grantees fiscal year.
Records (113):
Grant records shall be retained for a period of 3 years from the day the recipient submits its final expenditure report. If any litigation, claim, negotiation, audit, or other action involving the records has been started before the expiration of the 3-year period, the records must be retained until completion of the action and resolution of all issues which arise from it, or until the end of the regular 3-year period, whichever is later. Grant records include financial and program/progress reports, support documents, statistical records, and other documents that support the activity and/or expenditure of the recipient or sub-recipient under the award.
Financial Information (120)
Obligations (122):
(Project Grants) FY 14 $340,000,000; FY 15 est $335,000,000; and FY 16 Estimate Not Available
Range and Average of Financial Assistance (123):
Refer to Funding Opportunity Announcement.
Program Accomplishments (130):
Fiscal Year 2014: The SAFER Grant Program provided funding directly to fire departments and national, state, local, or tribal organizations representing the interests of volunteer firefighters to assist them in increasing the number of firefighters to help fire departments meet industry minimum standards and attain 24-hour staffing to protect communities from fire and fire related hazards, and to fulfill traditional missions of fire departments. Fiscal Year 2015: The SAFER Grant Program will provide funding directly to fire departments and national, state, local, or tribal organizations representing the interests of volunteer firefighters to assist them in increasing the number of firefighters to help fire departments meet industry minimum standards and attain 24-hour staffing to protect communities from fire and fire related hazards, and to fulfill traditional missions of fire departments. Fiscal Year 2016: There are no proposed changes to the program or outcome at present.
Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature (140):
U.S.C. 2201 et seq.; Fire Prevention and Control Act of 1974.
Information Contacts (150)
Regional or Local Office (151) :
See Regional Agency Offices. SAFER grants are directed from the FEMA Headquarters Office. There are 10 regional offices in FEMA who provide monitoring and oversight of FEMA grantees.
Headquarters Office (152):
Department of Homeland Security/FEMA Techworld TechWorld Bldg - South Tower, 5th Floor, 500 C Street, SW

, Wsahington, District of Columbia 20742 Email: firegrants@dhs.gov Phone: (866) 274-0960
Website Address (153):
http://www.fema.gov/firegrants/index.shtm.
Examples of Funded Projects (170):
Not Applicable.
Criteria for Selecting Proposals (180):
Refer to the Funding Opportunity Announcement for information on criteria for selecting proposals.