Pascrell Announces $187K for Firefighters in Haledon, Leonia
Two Bergen County fire departments will receive federal CARES Act aid in response to COVID-19
Washington, August 14, 2020
Tags: Public Safety
U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-09), co-chair of the Congressional Fire Services Caucus, announced today that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has awarded $187,126.67 in emergency CARES Act grants to the fire departments of Haledon and Leonia. The funding was provided through the CARES Act Assistance to Firefighters - COVID-19 Supplemental (AFG-S) grant program, which Rep. Pascrell advocated for as the legislation was crafted. The Haledon Fire Department will receive $138,415.24 in AFG-S funding and the Leonia Fire Department will receive $48,711.43. The federal funds will help the departments procure personal protective equipment, such as masks and gloves, to keep firefighters safe on the job and prevent the spread of COVID-19.
"The coronavirus pandemic has demanded more from our first responders than ever before. Today’s federal investment in Haledon’s and Leonia’s firefighters will help them continue their noble work of keeping our communities safe during this crisis,” said Rep. Pascrell, a longtime champion of robust federal support for America’s fire services. “We passed the CARES Act to support American families and the essential services we rely upon. That support included an additional $100 million in federal funding for the AFG program I helped establish. We have since passed the HEROES Act to provide even more resources for first responders who are in desperate need of assistance. Our firefighters are on the frontlines keeping us safe and we must have their backs. I will continue to work with federal agencies to ensure North Jersey’s firefighters have every dollar they need to weather this crisis. And I will continue to push the Senate to vote on the HEROES Act. Senate Republicans need to get serious with negotiations because this moment demands urgency.”
Annual funding for the Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) program is provided by Rep. Pascrell’s Firefighter Investment and Response Enhancement (FIRE) Act, which was signed into law in 2000 by President Bill Clinton. Administered by DHS’ Federal Emergency Management Agency, the AFG program provides direct support to eligible fire departments to help them meet the demanding and ever-evolving nature of their work. Through his FIRE Act, Rep. Pascrell helps procure hundreds of thousands in federal support for New Jersey firefighters each year. The CARES Act provided $100 million in funding for the AFG program to help fire departments purchase personal protective equipment and supplies.
Today’s news comes days after Pascrell announced more than $22,000 for the fire departments of Saddle Brook and Tenafly. Since the outset of the pandemic, Rep. Pascrell has worked to secure millions in emergency federal funding to aid New Jersey in its fight against the virus. He also helped pass the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act to provide more immediate relief to every state and local government across the United States and needed relief for vital workers like first responders, health workers, and teachers keeping us safe during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.