Congressman Matt Cartwright

Representing the 17th District of Pennsylvania
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Cartwright Announces $381,526 in DHS Grants for Fire and Rescue Companies in Schuylkill County

May 4, 2017
Press Release

Schuylkill County, PA – Today, Representative Matt Cartwright announced the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has awarded Goodwill Fire Company No. 1, Rescue Hook and Ladder Company No. 1, Minersville Fire Rescue, and Sheppton-Oneida Volunteer Fire Company with Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG). The funds will be distributed via the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

The Goodwill Fire Co., Rescue Hook and Ladder Co., and Minersville Fire-Rescue will use AFG funds to purchase Self Contained Breathing Apparatus units. Each unit will include: harness/backpack, face piece, and two cylinders. This type of equipment is worn by rescue workers, firefighters, and others to provide breathable air in an immediately dangerous-to-life or health atmosphere. The grant funds will be distributed as follows:

  • The Goodwill Fire Co. $ 94,477
  • Rescue Hook and Ladder Co. $ 100,381
  • Minersville Fire-Rescue $ 165,334

The Sheppton-Oneida Volunteer Fire Co. was awarded $21,334. This will allow them to purchase firefighting attack nozzles and P-25 compliant encrypted portal radios. This type of equipment is crucial to firefighters by reducing the risk of nozzle failure and improving fire attack, search, and rescue operations.

“I am glad the Fire and Rescue Companies in Schuylkill will be able to purchase this high-priority equipment,” Rep. Cartwright said, a member of the Congressional Fire Service Caucus. “I will continue to strongly support this federal program which helps to ensure the safety of our communities.”

The purpose of the AFG is to award competitive grants directly to fire departments and emergency medical service organizations to enhance their ability to protect the health and safety of the public, as well as that of first-responder personnel.  Since 2001, the AFG program has provided approximately $6.7 billion in grants to first-responder organizations to obtain much-needed emergency response equipment, personal protective equipment, firefighting and emergency vehicles, and training.

The 2016 AFG Program will award approximately $310.5 million in competitive grants to fire departments, non-affiliated EMS organizations, and state fire training academies.