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Pascrell, Gottheimer Announce $45K Federal Grant to Protect Teaneck Firefighters

Today, U.S. Reps. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-09), co-chair of the Congressional Fire Services Caucus, and Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ-05) announced the awarding of a $45,409 federal grant to the Teaneck Fire Department. Administered by the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency, this federal award is part of the Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) program, which provides direct financial assistance to eligible fire departments to equip and train emergency personnel for the demanding and ever-evolving nature of their work. Specifically, this grant money will be used to provide Teaneck’s firefighters with updated equipment that will help protect them from hazardous chemicals, blood-born pathogens, carcinogens, and other contaminants that they may encounter in the line of duty.

"The brave men and women of the Teaneck Fire Department put their lives on the line every day to keep our community safe. This federal investment will help provide Teaneck’s Bravest with the resources they need to be prepared for any emergency,” said Rep. Pascrell. “Instead of raising local property taxes or holding a bake sale to pay for this important equipment, I am pleased that the federal government could provide these resources. As co-chair of the Congressional Fire Services Caucus, I will continue to fight for each and every federal dollar for our first responders so that they can continue do their jobs safely and efficiently.”

"Clawing our federal tax dollars from the Moocher States back to New Jersey is a critical part of keeping our first responders and families safe,” Rep. Gottheimer said. “As a member of the Congressional Firefighters Caucus, I’ve made it a top priority to help fire departments in communities like Teaneck get the equipment and resources they need to keep us safe from everything from lone wolf terrorism to fire emergencies.”

The AFG program provides financial support to fire departments to purchase equipment, training, emergency vehicles, and other firefighting and fire prevention activities. The funding is made possible under Rep. Pascrell’s Firefighter Investment and Response Enhancement (FIRE) Act, which was signed into law in 2000 by President Bill Clinton.

In November, Rep. Pascrell sent a letter to DHS in support of Teaneck receiving this grant money, which can be viewed here. Just days after reaffirming his support for Paterson’s firefighters after they dueled a tragic blaze, Rep. Pascrell announced that a $289,450 federal grant had been secured for the department. In 2018, Rep. Pascrell celebrated the signing into law of his Firefighter Cancer Registry Act (H.R. 931), which established a national cancer registry for firefighters diagnosed with the deadly disease. Rep. Pascrell and Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) first announced introduction of the Firefighter Cancer Registry Act in May 2016 during a news conference at Clifton Fire Station 5, where they were joined by dozens of firefighters, including retired Haddon Heights Fire Chief Gene Dannenfelster, who since lost his battle with cancer. H.R.931 was introduced in the 115th Congress on February 17, 2017.

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