2004 Adopted Resolutions
72nd Annual Meeting
Boston

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SUPPORT FOR FIRE GRANTS PROGRAM

     WHEREAS, since 2000, the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program (the Fire Grant Program) has assisted urban, and suburban, and rural fire departments across the country in the areas of operations and firefighter safety, fire prevention, and firefighting vehicle acquisition; and

     WHEREAS, in the last 12 months alone, the Fire Grant Program has awarded over $695 million to over 8,600 fire departments; and

     WHEREAS, a fire department in the U.S. responds to a fire every 19 seconds; and

     WHEREAS, fire departments in the U.S. are in need of updated equipment, training and vehicles, as evidenced by the fact that: one-third of firefighters per shift do not have a self-contained breathing apparatus, approximately 57,000 per shift lack personal protective equipment, only 13 percent of fire departments are capable of responding to a hazmat incident which involves other emergency rescue personnel, and half of all fire engines are over 15 years old; and

     WHEREAS, HR 4107, the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Reauthorization Act of 2004 increases the cap for awards to medium to large cities while maintaining the commitment of the program to serve smaller jurisdictions; and

     WHEREAS, the Fire Grant Program has maintained a high standard of efficiency and performance in the distribution of Federal funds; and

     WHEREAS, the fire grant program administered by DHS directly funds cities, thereby efficiently expediting the movement of federal dollars to local jurisdictions while providing flexibility to meet the equipment and training needs of their departments,

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that The United States Conference of Mayors supports full funding for the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program within DHS, supports HR 4107 to reauthorize the program, and strongly encourages Congress to ensure that the program is managed and administered by the U.S. Fire Administration.