Tom Harkin - U.S. Seante

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WASHINGTON, D.C.-As part of his continued effort to support Iowa’s first responders, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) announced today that five Iowa communities received a total of $465,247 from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program. Harkin is a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee.

“I am pleased these brave men and women will receive the essential fire fighting tools they need to keep our communities safe,” said Harkin. “The equipment, technology and training these grants provide are key to protecting Iowa’s firefighters, our homes and loved ones.”

The Assistance to Firefighters Grants Program (AFGP) helps Iowa communities purchase firefighting equipment, firefighter health and safety programs, emergency medical services programs, and fire prevention and safety programs. Fire departments can submit proposals to receive funds for new fire trucks, hoses, protective equipment, rescue vehicles, and training for emergency personnel.

Although the program assists rural, urban, and suburban fire departments throughout the United States, it places a particular emphasis on rural fire departments. It requires that at least 60 percent of the funding must go to volunteer fire departments. This means that towns like Hartwick and Oelwein are not competing against cities like Des Moines or Cedar Rapids. Additionally, the program requires only a 10 percent match in local funding. In today’s economy, this makes it possible for small fire departments to take advantage of the program.

The Iowa grantees are listed below.

– Clinton Fire Department (Clinton, IA)

$122,509 for Operations and Safety

– Ocheyedan Fire Department (Ocheyedan, IA)

$31,282 for Operations and Safety

– Meriden Volunteer Fire Department (Meriden, IA)

$25,129 for Operations and Safety

– Waterloo Fire Rescue (Waterloo, IA)

$215,381 for Operations and Safety

– Hiawatha fire department (Hiawatha, IA)

$70,946 for Operations and Safety

Paid for and authorized by Citizens for Harkin