SAFER Grant Awards
Earlier this year the Fire District submitted two grant applications under the 2016 Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) program. On September 1st the District received notice that its application for grant funding to support hiring Firefighter/EMTs had been awarded. On September 8th the District received notice that its application to hire a part-time Volunteer Coordinator had also been awarded.
Both grant awards are currently being considered by the District’s Board of Commissioners, who ultimately must determine to accept or decline them. The District has 30 days from the date of award to accept or decline the grant awards and is currently considering the cost/benefits implications of doing so. The following provides a more detailed explanation of what each grant award provides as well as links to supporting documents.
Public Comment – Commissioners seek the community’s input in the form of written comment. This can be submitted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail at 323 N Fifth Ave., Sequim WA 98382. The Board meets again on September 19th to further consider the SAFER Grant awards.
Hiring Firefighters – This grant would support hiring six additional Firefighter/EMT for a three-year period. The grant funds a portion of the wages and benefits, which requires the District to fund the difference. This includes a cost-share match as well as the additional costs not covered by the grant. Accepting the grant also obligates the District to maintain current staffing levels for the three year period. Therefore, because accepting the grant commits the District to significant cost share obligations, the financial capacity for the doing so must be carefully considered.
On September 12th the Board of Commissioners held a special meeting to hear information from the Fire Chief and his staff. The session began with an overview of the grant award, its projected cost, and the acceptance requirements. This was followed with a financial analysis comparing the District’s revenue forecasts to projected expenditures. The presentation also included a needs analysis for the additional positions, identified the operational and service level benefits, and linked the positions to recommendations generated from the District’s recent Service Delivery Study findings. The links below provide access to materials provided during the session.
Volunteer Coordinator – This grant would support hiring a part-time position to support the District’s volunteer program for a four-year period. The grant funds the 100% position, which means the District would only be obligated for those expenditures above and beyond the grant program. The Volunteer Coordinator would be responsible for recruiting, training, and retaining the District’s volunteers. The link below provides more detailed information about what the grant award entails.