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Assistance to Firefighters Grant

Fire Grants
Number: 97.044
Agency: Department of Homeland Security

Program Information 

Program Number/Title (010):
97.044 Assistance to Firefighters Grant
Federal Agency (030):
Department of Homeland Security
Authorization (040):
The Federal Fire Prevention and Control Act of 1974, Public Law 112-239, 15 U.S.C 2229 et seq.
Objectives (050):
To provide funding directly to fire departments and emergency medical services (EMS) organizations of a State for the purpose of enhancing departments’ abilities to protect the health and safety of the public, as well as that of firefighting personnel, facing fire and fire-related hazards.
Types of Assistance (060):
PROJECT GRANTS
Uses and Use Restrictions (070):
Competitive grants for the AFG program are awarded to support firefighting and EMS operations and safety, vehicle acquisition, regional projects. Specific activities funded include professional training, wellness and fitness programs, equipment, personal protective equipment, modifications to facilities for first responder safety, other equipment and supplies that support firefighting and EMS operations and safety; firefighting vehicles, and emergency vehicles. Grants also are awarded for the Fire Prevention and Safety program are awarded to support activities to protect the public from fire and fire-Related hazards. Specific activities funded include general public education and awareness; code enforcement and awareness; fire and arson investigation; national, state, and regional programs and studies; and firefighter safety and research and development. Grants for the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant program are awarded to help fire departments and volunteer firefighter interest organizations to increase the number of frontline firefighters in their community and to enhance the capabilities of local fire departments to comply with staffing, response, and operational standards established by the NFPA and OSHA (NFPA 1710 and/or NFPA 1720 and OSHA 1910.134). Yes. Grantees must adhere to the restrictions stated in the guidance and application kit for the program and fiscal year in which they receive the award. Furthermore, as a condition of receiving an award, grantees also must agree to adhere to the award articles of agreement that require grantees to use the funds for the purpose stated in the awarded grant applications, and to meet the special conditions specified in the articles of agreement.
Eligibility Requirements (080)
Applicant Eligibility (081):
Eligible applicants for AFG are limited to fire departments, nonaffiliated EMS organizations, and State Fire Training Academies. These organizations operating in any of the 50 States plus the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and Puerto Rico are eligible for funding. 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 to a population within a fixed geographical area on a first-due basis. A "nonaffiliated EMS organization" is defined as a public or private nonprofit emergency medical services organization that provides direct emergency medical services, including medical transport, to a specific geographic area on a first-due basis but is not affiliated with a hospital and does not serve a geographic area where emergency medical services are adequately provided by a fire department. A “State Fire Training Academy” is defined as the primary state fire training academy, agency, or institution, for each state; which provides “entity-wide” delivery of fire training (and EMS training if applicable) as specified by legislative authorization, by general statutory authorization or charter, or is ad-hoc in nature with the general acceptance of the fire service. A listing of eligible State Fire Training Academy organizations and institutions can be found at: http://www.usfa.fema.gov/fireservice/.
Beneficiary Eligibility (082):
The ultimate beneficiaries of this program are the local or tribal communities serviced by the applicants, including, but not limited to, local businesses, homeowners and property owners. Additionally, children under 16 years of age, senior citizens, and firefighters would be the beneficiaries since these groups are the targeted "risk groups" for the fire prevention program.
Credentials/Documentation (083):
Each applicant must certify: 1) that they are an eligible applicant, as defined above; 2) as to the characteristics of their community, i.e., urban, suburban, or rural; 3) to the population size of the community served; and, 4) to their department type, i.e., volunteer, combination, or career (where applicable). Eligible applicants for the AFG program are limited to fire departments, nonaffiliated EMS organizations, and State fire training academies operating in any of the 50 States plus the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and Puerto Rico. 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 to a population within a fixed geographical area on a first-due basis. A "nonaffiliated EMS organization" is defined as a public or private nonprofit emergency medical services organization that provides direct emergency medical services, including medical transport, to a specific geographic area on a first-due basis but is not affiliated with a hospital and does not serve a geographic area where emergency medical services are adequately provided by a fire department. A “State Fire Training Academy” is defined as the primary state fire training academy, agency, or institution, for each state; which provides “entity-wide” delivery of fire training (and EMS training if applicable) as specified by legislative authorization, by general statutory authorization or charter, or is ad-hoc in nature with the general acceptance of the fire service. OMB Circular No. A-87 applies to this program.
Application and Award Process (090)
Preapplication Coordination (091):
There is no preapplication form required under this grant program. An environmental impact statement is required for this program. An environmental impact assessment is required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
Application Procedures (092):
OMB Circular No. A-102 applies to this program. OMB Circular No. A-110 applies to this program. The application deadline and other relevant information are contained in the application and in the program-specific guidance and application kits.
Award Procedure (093):
Submitted applications are reviewed by peer review panelists and then 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 the program guidance and application kit document.
Appeals (096):
Applicants whose grant requests are not recommended for funding after the peer review panel evaluation may request a reconsideration of that decision. Such a request may be successful if it is determined that the rating criteria were not appropriately applied, or there was a flaw in the competitive process that unfairly disadvantaged the applicant, or there was human error in the processing of the grant application. Requests for reconsideration must be submitted in writing within 30 days of the date of the notification of denial.
Renewals (097):
The AFG award period of performance is 1 year. Grantees may request an extension if they are unable to fulfill their grant obligations before the end of the 1-year period. Such requests will be considered and approved based on the written justification.
Assistance Consideration (100)
Formula and Matching Requirements (101):
Statutory Formula: 44 CFR §152.
Matching Requirements: Applicants who protect a population of over 1,000,000 are required to provide a nonfederal cost-share of not less than 15 percent of the total award. Applicants who protect a population between 20,000 and 1,000,000 are required to provide a nonfederal cost-share of not less than 10 percent of the total award. Applicants who protect a population of less than 20,000 are required to provide a nonfederal cost-share of not less than 5 percent of the total award. No waivers of this requirement will be granted except for fire departments of Insular Areas as provided for in 48 U.S.C. 1469a.
This program has MOE requirements, see funding agency for further details. This program also has a Maintenance of Effort (MOE) in that grantees are required to maintain operating expenditures during the grant’s period of performance in the areas funded by a grant at a level equal to or greater than the average of their operating expenditures in the 2 years preceding the year in which the grant is received. This requirement is intended to ensure that the Federal funds are used to supplement, not supplant, existing resources. In addition, this program will allocate more than $100 million in grants during the current fiscal year.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance (102):
Grants are available during the period of performance, which is 1 year. Refer to the FOA for specific details. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Electronic funds transfer.
Post Assistance Requirements (110)
Reports (111):
Grantees are required to submit semiannual financial and performance reports. The "Progress Reports" must include a narrative statement that details the progress of each award. Reports are due 30 days after the end of the sixth month of the performance period. Final financial and performance reports are due 90 days after the expiration or termination of grant award. Refer to program guidance. Refer to program guidance. Refer to program guidance. Refer to program guidance.
Audits (112):
In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $500,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $500,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133. Grantees are required to maintain and retain backup documentation such as bids, quotes, and cost/price analyses on file for Federal auditors. The required documentation for federally funded purchases should include specifications, solicitations, purchase orders, invoices, cancelled checks, copies of competitive quotes or proposals, and basis for selection.
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 12 $320,625,000; FY 13 est $320,920,083; and FY 14 est $335,000,000
Range and Average of Financial Assistance (123):
Refer to program guidance.
Program Accomplishments (130):
Not Applicable.
Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature (140):
The Federal Fire Prevention and Control Act of 1974, 15 U.S.C. 2229 et seq. In addition, the program guidance and application kit, the FAQs, an applicant tutorial, and other program information can be found on the program's website at www.fema.gov/firegrants.
Information Contacts (150)
Regional or Local Office (151) :
See Regional Agency Offices. The Assistance to Firefighters Grants are administered by FEMA. FEMA has 10 regional offices which employ Fire Program Specialists who may be contacted for information on the program.
Headquarters Office (152):
DHS/FEMA/Grant Programs Directorate, Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program TechWorld Bldg - South Tower, 5th Floor, 500 C Street, SW , Washington, District of Columbia 20472 Email: firegrants@dhs.gov Phone: (866) 274-0960
Website Address (153):
http://www.fema.gov.
Examples of Funded Projects (170):
Not Applicable.
Criteria for Selecting Proposals (180):
44 CFR §152. Refer to the current fiscal year AFG guidance and application kit for specific eligibility and award criteria.