March 18, 2011

Rockefeller, Manchin Announce $463,289 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. – U.S. Senators Jay Rockefeller and Joe Manchin (both D-W.Va.), today announced that the following fire departments throughout West Virginia will receive a total of $463,289 as part of the most recent round of funding under the 2010 Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) program.

The following fire departments were awarded grants:

Benwood Volunteer Fire Department ($118,938)

City of Logan Fire Department ($55,575)

Huttonsville-Mill Creek Volunteer Fire Department ($94,440)

KenovaVolunteer Fire Department ($77,093)

Thornton Area Volunteer Fire Department ($117,243)

The funding for the fire departments listed above will assist with operations and updating safety equipment.

"The people of West Virginia count on first responders to be there for our communities – their jobs are among the most important and skilled in the country and we thank them for their incredible service,” said Rockefeller.  “The money provided by this grant is vital during a time when budgets are being cut.  This grant helps to supply our brave first responders with the tools and equipment they need to keep us safe and secure in our communities.”

“I believe in our dedicated firefighters, who ensure that the people of West Virginia are safe and protected, and my experience working with the volunteer rescue squad in Marion County has allowed me to appreciate their hard work firsthand,” Senator Manchin said. “They are the people who wake up every day, leave their families at home and put their lives on the line to keep our communities safe. These grants will provide our first responders – who sacrifice so much – with the tools needed to make sure 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 $4,498,744 through the AFG program in Fiscal Year 2010, and grants have been awarded to 34 fire departments and one emergency medical service organization across the state.

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