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When are the Dear John Letters going out

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  • SWFD94
    replied
    Again, we are dealing with the feds. Nothing is consistent with them
    Well, I will agree with that 100,000%!!!

    Leave a comment:


  • theonlychief
    replied
    SWFD94

    I think you missed my point. We did compensate for the price increase in our 2003 application. But should we or someone else in the vehicle catagory be awarded a grant and it is after January 2004, the increases have hit buy no control of ours. You cant sit and speculate when you will be awarded your grant should be selected. Most everyone I beleive would assume they will be awarded by the end of the application year as in the past two years.
    That is the point I am trying to drive home. Again, we are dealing with the feds. Nothing is consistent with them.


    The chief

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  • Bones42
    replied
    So CRRFIRE, how do you propose they start taking applications for them before the previous ones are done? Do we or do we not apply for the same needed items? If our 2003 grant is approved, can we change our 2004 after submitting it?

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  • SWFD94
    replied
    .
    Our dept applied for a brush truck in 2002 (denied of course).Cost of rig was $ 92,000.00 total. Our share being $ 9,200.00. We applied again this year 2003, for the same identical rig Cost of truck jumped up one year later to $106,000.00. Our share now being $10,600.00. The cost of the rig went up roughly 15%. If I have to wait untill June of 2004, and should the price jump again 15%, our share now will be the $ 10,600.00 plus the price increase of $15,900.00 totaling roughly $ 26,500.00
    Not trying to pick on this person, but this is why you should budget in your grant app for price increases. We learned the hard way last year and are now having to come up with a little extra of our own dollars for a few items. This years app included anywhere from 5%-15% added to the bid price for price increases. If the price goes up and you need it, great...if the price does not go up (or actually goes down as was the case with one of the items in our 2002 award), you have a little extra to purchase something else you might have wanted/needed but did not want to appear too greedy.

    It would be nice if FEMA could get the dear john letters out sooner, but I have patience and can wait and also feel the same of most others...no news is good news!

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  • CRRFIRE
    replied
    The National Fire Plan is managed by the Federal Land Management Agaencies (USFS, BIA, BLM, USF&W) for wildland fire hazard reduction and mitigation, mainly fuels reduction and mitigation and wildland urban interface fire prevention education. It mainly goes to the west and south, since that is where the fires are.

    The RFA/VFA Grant moey the states dole out comes from the NFP.

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  • CRRFIRE
    replied
    Sure there are going to be some awards that make you scratch your head - but understand how the money is being allocated.

    54% to those areas less than 50K population. Inside of that the money is devided in to those 5 or 6 areas you can apply for and the % of money each area is allocated. I know I threw a fit when I found out what some of the cities got last year. But I now have a better understnding for the awards - I may not agree, but I understand. They still have to meet the match (over 50K pop.)

    My Board has wanted me to apply for a vehicle - but I might as well not do an application, since we have units newer than 25 years.

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  • CRRFIRE
    replied
    "They will claim that since 2003 took so long into 2004, 2004 will be skipped and move on to 2005."

    This is news to me. Actually they are in the process of passing the legislation to take the funding to $900 mil.

    The Fire Act Grant process is a model for effiency and fairness - peer review. Something that no other federal grant process has and Congress is taking notice. There is talk of integrating a similar process in other grant programs if they could figure out how. Only the cops are as organized as the fire service when it comes to handling our own.

    As for the $92K brush rig - you are right when you say it is for the basics. If you keep your requests in teh real world, you will find yourself on the winning edge. The first year - with only $90 mil. to go around, figuring out the process, etc. almost no one got a grant. Last year, at $350 mil - if you submitted a realistic grant request, you had a 1 in 4 chance in getting the money. This year - 1 in 2, If you submitted a realistic request.

    You also have to play the odds game - If you want the money without a lot of competition, apply for fire prevention (90+% chance of approval). IF you want the vehicles - you are looking at a 2% chance of getting it.

    You also do not say the age of your other vehicles - if you have anything newer than 25 years - you have a lessor chance.

    Leave a comment:


  • waterboy1
    replied
    Bones, Good answer, were you a politician in your previous life?

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  • Bones42
    replied
    If the 2003 process takes until June of 2004, I can see a lot of depts with this problem.
    Nah, this is FEMA's way of telling us there is no 2004 program. They will claim that since 2003 took so long into 2004, 2004 will be skipped and move on to 2005.

    Leave a comment:


  • waterboy1
    replied
    Dateline: March 31st, 2004
    Well we have 1 more day to get our 2004 application into Fema and we still have not heard anything from the grant gods on last years app. Lets see, should we apply for the same equip. as last year or go for some other much needed equip. Last year we priortized our needs and requested for the most needed.

    If the 2003 process takes until June of 2004, I can see a lot of depts with this problem.

    Good Luck and congrats to the winners

    Leave a comment:


  • EastKyFF
    replied
    If you think the process is so damn unfair, quit applying. Just you try to administer $750 million in grants--sift through 15,000 apps and start making awards in less than three months after the deadline.

    You know why you probably got shanked on a brush truck? Because no more than 25% of the funds can go to apparatus, no matter how good they think the unfunded ideas are. Add to that, what the hell kind of brush truck costs $92,000? This is not a toy-funding program. This is for basic needs. I tried for a sexy new light rescue last year and got a Dear John the first day. Why? Not a basic need. This year, I put in to replace our worn out turnouts, retrofit our SCBA's with integrated PASS alarms, and upgrade training materials. Guess what? Got it.

    You can't count grant chickens before they hatch. And if you're buying a truck with the grant, how's that interfere with your budget if you don't know if you've got it yet? Is waiting so tough that you'd just as soon take yourself out of the running? Didn't think so.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ira Brown
    replied
    CRRFIRE...what is the National Fire Plan?

    Leave a comment:


  • theonlychief
    replied
    Through June?????. How in sam heck can a Dept. budget for a potential grant when they don't know if their grant is going through or not. The next problem is getting your vendors to hold their prices. Example: Our dept applied for a brush truck in 2002 (denied of course).Cost of rig was $ 92,000.00 total. Our share being $ 9,200.00. We applied again this year 2003, for the same identical rig Cost of truck jumped up one year later to $106,000.00. Our share now being $10,600.00. The cost of the rig went up roughly 15%. If I have to wait untill June of 2004, and should the price jump again 15%, our share now will be the $ 10,600.00 plus the price increase of $15,900.00 totaling roughly $ 26,500.00 You just don't get the vendors to hold their prices for FEMA. This is not fair to the small under funded Department's. There must be a better way.

    Leave a comment:


  • CRRFIRE
    replied
    We are like you - 4500-5000 in a residential rural community. I did not write grants until 3-4 years ago. We have been awarded $45K last year from Fire Act and $15K each this year & last year, $11.5 K the year before and I don't remember what the first. I also am waiting on year 4 from the National Fire Plan which will give us $147K on top of the $490K we have already been awarded for the first 3 years of the project.

    We budget for our matches, and the matches for the NFP come from in-kind and partnerships with the hommeowners assn.

    I too have offered to help any RFD in the state that wants it. This year I helped 2. I also helped 1 in MT when I found out they did not even know about the Fire Act. Their problem is they are so rural they will have problems with the match. Their budget is only $5K a year. Their 1st line engine is a 1947 and is a small 2-seater that carrys maybe 250 gal. They have almost no PPE.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ira Brown
    replied
    I agree that using a grant writer is a waste of money...money that some of us don't have in the first place. Before I joined this department I had never written a grant before and my department had never applied for one. Research the rules and spell your needs out according to them...no smoke and mirrors. In the past four years since I decided to take the challenge to write the grants we've gotten four grants through the U.S. Forestry Service's Volunteer Assistance Program ($7,000.00 total), an AED, funded for $65K in the 2001 Fire Grant, and two weeks ago I received the 1199A Direct Deposit email and the 6 questions today via phone call at work. My 2003 Fire Grant was for $192K. You may wonder how we can afford the 10% matching. Phone calls, letters, and advertising your department to the people in your coverage area. My department is strictly rural with no incorporated areas with an average population of 4500. If I can write a successful grant then just about anyone can; however, it does take a lot of work. It can't be said enough though, that you have to follow the rules explicitly and apply them to your department. Although I have not written grants for other departments, I have volunteered and helped some of our mutual aid departments with theirs. I would be more than willing to help them again because after all, their receiving a grant (one did last year) helps us when we call on them for aid.

    Leave a comment:

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