Cornyn encourages Fire Departments to apply for DHS Grant funding for additional personnel

CONTACT: Brian Walsh, (202) 224-0704
John Drogin, (202) 224-0703

For Immediate Release

WASHINGTON-U.S. Sen. John Cornyn encouraged Texas fire departments on Monday to apply for grant funding available to increase the number of firefighters and support their work. Sen. Cornyn offered his assistance to firefighters in the application process, which begins today. The funding comes through the Department of Homeland Security's Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant program.

"The men and women on the front lines of emergency response need more support than ever as they work to keep our communities safe," Sen. Cornyn said. "I encourage local fire departments in Texas to apply for this important funding, and will assist throughout the application process."

The Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant program helps fire departments increase the number of frontline firefighters. The goal is for fire departments to increase their staffing and deployment capabilities and ultimately attain 24-hour staffing, thus assuring that their communities have adequate protection from fire and fire-related hazards.

The SAFER grants support two specific activities: (1) the hiring of firefighters, and (2) recruitment and retention of volunteer firefighters. SAFER is part of the Assistance to Firefighters Grants and is under the Office of Grants and Training of the Department of Homeland Security.

Sen. Cornyn has held roundtables with emergency first responders across the state as part of his ongoing effort to highlight security needs in Texas hometowns. The events provide communities the opportunity to express their needs and concerns directly to Sen. Cornyn.

A total of approximately $110 million is available for fire departments across the nation.

The online application form for the grants is available on the Web at For more information or assistance with the grant process, contact John Wyatt in Sen. Cornyn's Washington office at 202-224-2934 or visit:

Fire departments have until August 31, 2007 to complete and submit their applications.

Sen. Cornyn serves on the Armed Services, Judiciary and Budget Committees. In addition, he is Vice Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Ethics. He serves as the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee's Immigration, Border Security and Refugees subcommittee and the Armed Services Committee's Airland subcommittee.