Salisbury – Mayor Jake Day is pleased to announce that the City Council has voted unanimously in favor of accepting the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant in the amount of $1,527,738. The grant comes from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) / Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and is earmarked for the hiring of additional firefighters to the Salisbury Fire Department.
The grant, awarded over a period of three years, will pay for 75 percent of the salary and benefits for each of the additional firefighters for the first two years of the grant. The third year of the grant funds 35 percent of salary and benefits.
“On behalf of the Department, I am extremely grateful for the continued support that the City Administration and City Council has shown by accepting this grant,” said Salisbury Fire Chief John Tull. “This tremendous opportunity will greatly enhance the Department’s operational capabilities. By adding twelve (12) new firefighter positions, the Department will be able to provide effective and efficient services, enhance firefighter safety and increase our emergency response capabilities.”
Council President Jack Heath said, “Having a staffed piece of fire apparatus at every station means that our response times will see marked improvement. The SAFER grant is going to have a very positive impact on the safety of our citizens.”
“With a fast-growing city, you’re constantly having to factor for more traffic, more people, more fire and emergency calls,” said Mayor Day. “Every year we see a higher demand for service than the year before. SAFER will allow us to not only continue to meet our high standards for response, but it will help us provide the manpower to meet the needs of an ever-growing city.
“In an atmosphere that, at times, has seen politicians willing to shortchange public safety for political gain, it’s refreshing to see Senators Van Hollen and Cardin set the example of leaders placing citizens’ needs first. I thank them for their stalwart leadership and for their assistance in securing this grant. “