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Ennis Daily News

Local fire departments receive big checks

It was a good day for local fire departments Friday after the Ennis Fire Department and Telico Volunteer Fire Department received more than a quarter of a million dollars as part of a firefighter’s grant program.
According to Ennis firefighter Josh Slovacek, the Ennis department, which received $62,814, will spend its money on 26 sets of turnout gear to protect every firefighter. Telico got a windfall three times the size of Ennis’. With the $204,250 that department received, they are going to buy a new truck
“The volunteer fire department works solely on grants and donations,” Telico VFD Assistant Chief Benny Trojacek said. “It would take us about 10 years to replace our truck through fund-raising. It’s exciting to receive something like this.”
Representatives of Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Ennis Fire Department, Telico Volunteer Fire Department, Congressman Joe Barton’s office and Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison’s office were present for the donation Friday at 11 a.m. at Ennis fire station #2 at 901 E. Martin Luther King Drive. The ceremony marked the beginning of the 2007 Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) awards.
“These departments have put in a lot of hard work,” said Brad Cole, of FEMA, at Friday’s ceremony. “The fire service is one of our first lines of defense in most emergency situations, whether it be natural or man made disasters. FEMA is critically aware of the service you provide.”
The departments are just two of several that received nearly $1.5 million through the FEMA assistance program.
FEMA released $1,492,741 in AFG to local fire departments and emergency medical services organizations in the state of Texas.
Nationally, the AFG awards will be distributed in phases and provide more than $490 million to fire departments and nonaffiliated emergency medical service organizations throughout the country.
“The Assistance to Firefighters Grants program has been instrumental in building capacity and providing needed resources for our nation’s firefighters,” said FEMA Administrator R. David Paulison.
“From the purchase of equipment to first responder training, the AFG program has helped improve response capabilities and saved lives and property in communities throughout the United States.”
AFG awards aim to enhance response capabilities and to more effectively protect the health and safety of the public with respect to fire and other hazards. The grants enable local fire departments and emergency medical services organizations to purchase or receive training, conduct first-responder health and safety programs and buy equipment and response vehicles. AFG also supports regional projects in which multiple organizations serving more than one local jurisdiction benefit directly from activities implemented with grant funds.
“Firefighters are among the true heroes in our community, and any actions we can take to make their jobs safer or more efficient not only benefits the brave men and women of the fire departments, they benefit the community as a whole,” said Congressman Joe Barton.
“Through these grants, the Ennis Fire Department and Telico Volunteer Fire Department will be even better equipped to combat fires and other emergencies in the area.”
Funding priorities and criteria for evaluating AFG applications are established from recommendations provided by a criteria development panel that is composed of fire service professionals representing the nine major fire service organizations.
Funding priorities included achieving national baseline capabilities, risk-based funding and communications and equipment interoperability.

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Posted by on Jul 31 2007. Filed under Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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