February 17, 2011

Rockefeller, Manchin Announce $949,938 in Funding for Fire Departments Across West Virginia

Federal Funds Awarded Through Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senators Jay Rockefeller and Joe Manchin III (both D-W.Va.), today announced that the following fire departments throughout West Virginia will receive a total of $949,938 as part of the 12th round of funding under the 2010 Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) program.

The following fire departments were awarded grants:

Bakerton Fire Department ($180,500)

Beckley Fire Department ($158,889)

Deerwalk Volunteer Fire Department ($102,648)

Flatwoods Community Volunteer Fire Department ($261,250)

Jane Lew Volunteer Fire Department ($51,195)

Seneca Rocks Volunteer Fire Department ($83,600)

Springfield Area Rescue Squad ($111,856)

The funding for Beckley Fire Department, Deerwalk Volunteer Fire Department, Jane Lew Volunteer Fire Department, and Seneca Rocks Volunteer Fire Department will assist with operations and updating safety equipment. The funding for Bakerton Fire Department, Flatwoods Community Volunteer Fire Department, and Springfield Area Rescue Squad will go toward vehicle acquisition.

“The people of West Virginia count on firefighters to be therefor our communities everyday – their jobs are among the most important in the country and we thank them for their service,” said Rockefeller. “The money provided by this grant is great news for the state and will supply our firefighters with the necessary tools and equipment they need to keep us all safe.”

“The hardworking volunteers at our local fire departments are often first on the scene in an emergency, making sure that the people of West Virginia are safe and well cared for,” Manchin said. “These grants will provide our first responders – who sacrifice so much – with the resources necessary to ensure that they can quickly respond to West Virginians in times of need.”

For Fiscal Year 2010, the AFG program will award nearly $340 million in direct assistance to fire department and emergency medical service organizations to improve the effectiveness of firefighting operations and emergency response capabilities. Funding can be used to purchase response equipment, personal protective equipment and vehicles.

West Virginia has received a total of $3,424,964 through the AFG program in Fiscal Year 2010, and grants have been awarded to 23 fire departments across the state.

AFG grants are funded through the annual Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act. Rockefeller has consistently supported funding for this program and for other grant programs to ensure adequate funding and resources for America’s first responders.