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Frank A. Douglass Insurance Agency

Ahmeek Fire gets coveted FEMA grant

Ahmeek’s Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department has won a sought-after grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Captain and Administrator Michael Defina says that the department only gets money through the efforts of its members, which makes the nearly $214,000 coming its way a true lifeline.

With a budget annually of approximately six- to eight-thousand dollars, based upon our fundraising activities, we are unable to purchase any new lifesaving or personal safety equipment for our members in our organization to ensure our safety.

Defina talks about the equipment the grant will help his department purchase.

Coats, pants, boots, helmets, and gloves and it costs about $4,200 to outfit every firefighter. The current equipment we have is no longer compliant with national standards and sometimes, in some forms, it can be unsafe. In addition to that our self-contained breathing apparatus is vintage and is in dire need of replacement.

Defina says it doesn’t plug every hole in the budget, though. They still need help buying a new rescue truck. It’s total cost comes to over $221,000. Defina says if funds can’t be secured members of the department will have to take out a loan, using personal property as collateral.

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