Blankenship Rural Fire receives $20,000 grant

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The Blankenship Rural Fire District near Columbia Falls will receive grant money for its operations and safety.

According to information from the office of U.S. Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., Blankenship RFD will receive $20,581 through the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program of the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The program is a component of the larger, coordinated effort to strengthen the nationís overall level of preparedness and ability to respond to fire and related hazards.

ďRural fire departments are on the front line in keeping our communities safe. Iím glad to see these much needed funds awarded to Blankenship and East Missoula Rural Fire Departments,Ē Daines stated in a media release.

Also, the East Missoula Rural Fire Department will receive $188,096.

The purpose of the AFG Program is to award grants directly to fire departments, nonaffiliated Emergency Medical Services organizations, and state fire training academies to enhance their ability to protect the health and safety of the public, as well as that of first-responder personnel.

Using a competitive process that is overseen by fire service subject matter experts, grants are awarded to applicants whose requests best address the priorities of the AFG Program.

Since the 2001 fiscal year, the AFG Program has provided approximately $7.1 billion in grants to first-responder organizations to obtain much needed emergency response equipment, personal protective equipment, as well as firefighting and emergency vehicles, and training.

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