Congresswoman Sewell Announces $1,347,321 in Funding to Hire New Firefighters in Tuscaloosa
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Terri A. Sewell (AL-7) announced that $1,347,321 in funding was awarded to the Tuscaloosa Fire & Rescue Service by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) grant program in cooperation with the U.S. Fire Administration. The fiscal year 2010 funds, awarded through the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response program (SAFER), will be used to improve Tuscaloosa’s ability to respond to fire and fire-related hazards.
“Firefighters put their lives on the line every day across the State of Alabama,” said Rep. Sewell. “These funds will help ensure that the Tuscaloosa Fire & Rescue Service has the adequate staffing they need to protect our communities.”
“This funding will enable us to significantly increase staffing in our fire department for the first time in Tuscaloosa’s history,” said Mayor Walt Maddox. “Significantly increasing staffing for our fire department improves our response times and our ability to go into dangerous situations with increasingly positive outcomes. We are grateful for Congresswoman Sewell’s efforts and know that she will be an advocate for our first responders. We are very excited about what this means for the services we will be able to provide to the citizens of Tuscaloosa.”
“This will allow us to meet the safety requirements necessary to staff more fire engines, and enhance the protection we provide to the citizens of Tuscaloosa,” said George White, Acting Chief of Tuscaloosa Fire & Rescue.
SAFER grants bolster fire departments' ability to respond to fires and fire-related hazards, along with their overall level of preparedness. These funds will be used to hire more firefighters, and provide for their salaries, benefits, and general equipment needs.
Contact: Allison Abney