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President Biden signs law to secure fire service funding until 2028

July 10, 2024

President Biden signs bill to secure fire service grants

As reported by the IAFC and CFSI, President Joe Biden signed the Fire Grants and Safety Act (S. 870) into law on July 9th, 2024.

This new legislation ensures the continuation of the Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) and Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) programs through fiscal year 2028, providing essential federal funding for fire departments across the United States.

The act authorizes $750 million each for the AFG and SAFER grant programs annually from FY2024 to FY2028.

It also delays the sunset date for these programs to September 30, 2030.

In addition, the law authorizes $95 million for the U.S.

Fire Administration (USFA) to fund various initiatives, including the National Emergency Response Information System (NERIS) and the development of EMS programs.

Key supporters and legislative efforts

The signing ceremony was attended by notable officials, including International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) President John S.

Butler.

Butler emphasized the collective effort involved in passing the legislation, stating: “The passage of the Fire Grants and Safety Act represents a collective, bipartisan effort on the part of congressional representatives, the IAFC membership and board, fellow professional associations, and fire service leaders from all over the country.”

The bill received strong bipartisan support, thanks to the efforts of the leadership in both the House and Senate, as well as the Congressional Fire Services Caucus.

Key supporters included Senator Susan Collins, Senator Tom Carper, Senator Jon Tester, Senator Lisa Murkowski, Congressman Bill Pascrell, Congressman Steny Hoyer, Congressman Mike Bost, and Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick.

Continued advocacy and future steps

The Coalition for Fire Service Improvements (CFSI) played a crucial role in advocating for the bill’s passage.

Their sustained efforts over two years, alongside other national organizations and congressional members, were instrumental in securing the legislation’s success.

CFSI’s National Advisory Committee members also contributed significantly by building support for the bill.

CFSI remains committed to supporting robust funding for these programs.

Recently, they worked with Representatives Pascrell, Bost, and Fitzpatrick to secure an additional $7.5 million for AFG and SAFER in the House FY2025 DHS Appropriations Bill.

This amendment was accepted, and the bill passed the House in June.

CFSI will continue to advocate for these programs as the FY25 process progresses.

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