WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., today announced the award of $1,858,824 in Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grants to fire departments in Biloxi, Purvis, Iuka, Soso, Laurel, Ellisville, Carthage, Cleveland, and Brandon. The grants are being awarded as part of the Fiscal Year 2017 Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program.

“FEMA’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant program provides much-needed funding to local fire departments to improve operations,” Wicker said. “The grants announced today will support important upgrades to equipment for dozens of firefighters and aid other departments with special projects that will protect our communities.”

“Being well trained and equipped is a necessity for firefighters to respond to all types of emergencies effectively, which is why this FEMA grant program is important.  This funding will help these volunteer and local fire departments be ready when they are called into action,” Hyde-Smith said.

The grants were awarded following a competitive process and include support for the following projects:

  • Biloxi Fire Department, Biloxi – $1,051,982 to hire 9 firefighters for 3 years
  • Lamar County Board of Supervisors, Purvis – $300,000 for recruitment and $96,785 for hiring
  • Iuka Volunteer Fire Department, Iuka – $140,954 to purchase a new fire truck and $64,000 for 24 sets of personal protective equipment
  • Hebron Volunteer Fire Department, Soso – $65,477 for new personal protective equipment for 10 firefighters and 5 new face masks
  • Sharon Volunteer Fire Department, Laurel – $40,000 for 15 sets of personal protective equipment
  • Johnson Volunteer Fire Department, Ellisville – $38,381 for new personal protective equipment for eleven firefighters
  • City of Laurel – $27,620 for operations and safety equipment
  • Edinburg Volunteer Fire Department, Carthage – $17,620 for operations and safety equipment
  • City of Cleveland Volunteer Fire Department, Cleveland – $10,024 for fire prevention and education
  • Lake Harbor Volunteer Fire Department, Brandon – $5,981 for operations and safety equipment

The AFG program is designed to improve communities’ overall level of preparedness and ability to respond to fire and related hazards. Since FY 2001, the AFG Program has provided approximately $7.1 billion in grants to first-responder organizations to obtain much-needed emergency response equipment, personal protective equipment, firefighting and emergency vehicles, and training.

For additional information on the FY 2017 AFG program, visit its website here.

Press Release: Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith, August 25, 2018