§ 152.1 - Purpose and eligible uses of grant funds.
(a) This competitive grant program will provide funding directly to fire departments of a State for the purpose of enhancing departments abilities to protect the health and safety of the public, as well as that of firefighting personnel, facing fire and fire-related hazards. Eligible applicants can submit only one application per application period. Departments that submit multiple applications in one application period will have each of their applications deemed ineligible.
(b) Eligible applicants are fire departments or fire departments of a State which is defined as an agency or organization that has a “formally recognized arrangement” with a State, local or tribal authority (city, county, parish, fire district, township, town, or other non-Federal governing body) to provide fire suppression services within a fixed geographical area. A fire department can apply for assistance for its emergency medical services unit provided the unit falls organizationally under the auspices of the fire department. A municipality or fire district may submit an application on behalf of a fire department when the fire department lacks the legal status to do so, e.g., where the fire department falls within the auspices of the municipality. When a municipality or fire district submits an application on behalf of a fire department, the fire department is precluded from submitting an additional application. Non-Federal airport and/or port authority fire departments are eligible, but only if they have a formally recognized arrangement with the local jurisdiction to provide fire suppression, on a first-due basis, outside the confines of the airport or port facilities. Airport or port authority fire departments whose sole responsibility is suppression of fires on the airport grounds or port facilities are not eligible for this grant program. Fire departments that are Federal or contracted by the Federal government and whose sole responsibility is suppression of fires on Federal installations are not eligible for this grant program. Fire stations that are not independent but are part of, or controlled by a larger fire department or agency, are typically not eligible. Fire departments that are for-profit departments (i.e., do not have specific non-profit status or are not municipally based) are not eligible to apply for assistance under this program. Also not eligible for this program are ambulance services, rescue squads, auxiliaries, dive teams, urban search and rescue teams, fire service organizations or associations, and State/local agencies such as a forest service, fire marshal, hospitals, and training offices.
(c) Congress included in the legislation a list of fourteen activities eligible for funding under this program. Those activities are as follows:
(1) To hire additional firefighting personnel;
(2) To train firefighting personnel in firefighting, emergency response (including response to a terrorism incident or use of a weapon of mass destruction), arson prevention and detection, or the handling of hazardous materials, or to train firefighting personnel to provide any of the training in this paragraph (c);
(3) To fund the creation of rapid intervention teams to protect firefighting personnel at scenes of fires and other emergencies;
(4) To certify fire inspectors;
(5) To establish wellness and fitness programs for firefighting personnel to ensure that the firefighting personnel can carry out their duties;
(6) To fund emergency medical services provided by fire departments;
(7) To acquire additional firefighting vehicles, including fire trucks;
(8) To acquire additional firefighting equipment, including equipment for communications, monitoring, and response to a terrorism incident or use of a weapon of mass destruction;
(9) To acquire personal protective equipment required for firefighting personnel by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and other personal protective equipment for firefighting personnel, including protective equipment to respond to a terrorism incident or the use of a weapon of mass destruction;
(10) To modify fire stations, fire training facilities, and other facilities to protect the health and safety of firefighting personnel;
(11) To enforce fire codes;
(12) To fund fire prevention programs;
(13) To educate the public about arson prevention and detection; and
(14) To provide incentives for the recruitment and retention of volunteer firefighting personnel for volunteer firefighting departments and other firefighting departments that utilize volunteers.
(d) The specific activities that will be eligible for funding will be announced in the Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) that we will publish pursuant to the program's annual appropriation.