The New Orleans Fire Department, with assistance from New Orleans Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (NOHSEP), has received a FEMA grant worth $15.9 million to hire 63 full-time firefighter positions over a three-year period, announced Mayor LaToya Cantrell announced Tuesday (Sept. 8).

The Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant provides funding directly to fire departments to assist in increasing the number of firefighters to help communities meet industry minimum standards.

“You know that growing our fire department has a been a priority for our administration,” said Mayor Cantrell. “This amounts to a $15.9 million investment in our department and in our people, building the rank and file within our firefighter community. We heard this come from the firefighters themselves, and we told our firefighters to make no mistake about it, our administration will do everything necessary to build the ranks and go after the resources that we need to make this a reality. Sixty-three firefighters over a three-year period, this is a huge win for the City of New Orleans.”

This is one of seven grants that NOFD has received in the last 12 months, said NFOD Supt. Tim McConnell. In addition to this $15.9 million, the department has received roughly $750,000 in grants to purchase firefighting and rescue equipment.

“I couldn’t be more proud of the folks who worked on this grant, especially our liaison to NOHSEP, Capt. Matt Spector,” said NOFD Superintendent Tim McConnell. “This is a true win for the City, to have 100 percent of these costs covered by the federal government. This is a testament to the hard work that’s done behind the scenes.”

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