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  • #16
    How rediculous... Uniforms???? WTF???? I really hope that ANY SAFER $$$$ went towards uniforms!!!!! All we wanted was one BODY!!! We would go to goodwill and get some pants for that body, just so we can be that extra safe!!!!!

    I there are dept's using SAFER $$$$ for uniforms, you can go you know what to yourself...

    Sorry, but SAFER is for Firefighters, and we would never try and use it to "bend the rules."

    Comment


    • #17
      Settle down Beavis. Take a few deep breaths and work on decaf for tomorrow.

      Here's how SAFER broke down in 2005:

      FFs - Award Qty
      1 - 11
      2 - 4
      3 - 23
      4 - 7
      5 - 1
      6 - 13
      7 - 2
      8 - 2
      9 - 5
      10 - 3
      12 - 6
      15 - 3
      18 - 3
      21 - 1
      26 - 1
      64 - 1

      71 R&R Awards

      So a lot of FFs were awarded, and I highly doubt anyone's inclusion of department t-shirts to help with recruitment and retention took your FF away. As you can see by the stats, asking for 1 FF was a long shot unless you had tons of evidence that you were putting 2-3 FFs on the street currently on the first out truck. If you aren't doing that now, 1 FF does not solve your problems at all based on NFPA. Hence the reason there were so many awards for 3+ FFs. And the reason that Pattison NJ wouldn't have gotten any money is they asked for 32 instead of 64. 64 brings them into compliance, and that is the only number they could have asked for. Sure it's going to cost them a lot of dough. For those that would say we can't afford 3 salaries to solve our problem, then you'll have to look at something else than a hiring app to SAFER to bring up the ranks.

      I know it's frustrating, but as we've found out and mentioned in several posts since then, it wasn't the uniforms that got Earl kicked out by computer. It was the training. Uniforms are eligible under R&R, not hiring. So no one is bending any rules. DHS is aware of loopholes and cheaters and is taking the money back. Excess fund awards anyone? Hmmm....

      - Brian
      Brian P. Vickers
      www.vickersconsultingservices.com
      Emergency Services Consulting
      Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
      Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

      Comment


      • #18
        I've got a good questionsfor the group.

        Has anyone that received a R&R award last year, also applied for a R&R this year?

        Last year we were awarded $30,000 ($7,500/year for 4 years) for Fire Academy Tuition, Training Reimbursement, Physicals & Tuition reimbursement. I would figure it would be a long shot. However, I did apply again for additional "tuition" funds to supplement last years grant.

        Part of the reason I applied is the old motto "If you don't apply, they take the money away"

        Comment


        • #19
          Originally posted by Culpster
          I there are dept's using SAFER $$$$ for uniforms, you can go you know what to yourself...
          Wow . . . . . . .

          Comment


          • #20
            In the absence of a grant award, i'd guess i could settle for anatomical gifts.

            Both, unfortunately, were denied.

            earl (happily married, happily)

            Comment


            • #21
              Looking for earl!

              Greenacres, Sorry for using this forum to make contact with you, but could you send me an email at [email protected]. I think that we might have a mutual friend that passed away in 2000. I would like to talk to you about him. Thanks
              PS It's hard to see the underscore between canton and 120

              Comment


              • #22
                Well said bc79er. I would add to that in sayng many of these questions arise from "misinterpretation" or outright "failure to read" the PG correctly.

                Culpster someone making a mistake in interpreting the "uniforms" clause was probably no bigger a problem than your "misconception" that one firefighter would get funded, when the whole intent was to satisfy NFPA 1710 & 1720. That's why the forums exist and there are a room full of SMEs ( Subject Matter Experts) in Washington that you can call upon to be certain, before wasting time filing an applciation that would be denied.

                Granted the system is not perfect but, I would cauiton you to remember that up until two years ago, nobody had ANY chance at R & R or hiring prior to SAFER being brought forth. Growing pains should be expected in any new program. Read, listen, learn, get over it and re-file dude. Better luck next time.
                Kurt Bradley
                Fire/EMS/EMA Grant Consultant
                " Never Trade Skill for Luck"

                Comment


                • #23
                  K3, you're right, always apply. You may not score as highly because of the 2005 award, but if no one else gets it together properly and can't satisfy the requested info in the application and you did, they can't give them the award. They will probably hand money over to someone else before you since you have something already, but it doesn't automatically boot you out.
                  Brian P. Vickers
                  www.vickersconsultingservices.com
                  Emergency Services Consulting
                  Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
                  Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Uniforms are NOT excluded or inelligilbe activities in the recruit and retention catagory of SAFER. There was no bending of the rules, mistake or misinterpretation of the rules made by those applying for R&R funds to pay for uniforms and if you (Culpster) cant figure out why uniforms might be an extremely good volunteer retention tool for a department that cant afford to go out and buy 40 sets on their own then I doubt that you were capable of making much of a case for 1 firefighter helping you meet parts of 1710 or 1720.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Culpster
                      How rediculous... Uniforms???? WTF???? I really hope that ANY SAFER $$$$ went towards uniforms!!!!! All we wanted was one BODY!!! We would go to goodwill and get some pants for that body, just so we can be that extra safe!!!!!

                      I there are dept's using SAFER $$$$ for uniforms, you can go you know what to yourself...

                      Sorry, but SAFER is for Firefighters, and we would never try and use it to "bend the rules."
                      How ridiculous.... Paid positions????? WTF????

                      Maybe you see my point... What works for your department, may not
                      work for mine. There is no way we can support paid positions, not on a
                      $6,500.00 a year budget. We can try to bring in more volunteers, and
                      jackets is one way to provide recognition for our Volunteers, and providing
                      that recognition is one part of our recruiting and retention program.

                      One of the big parts about SAFER grants is doing what works for YOUR
                      department. There is no cookie cutter solution to recruiting and retention, and the grant process recognizes that.

                      There also is no bending of the rules, and I take offense at you stating that there is. In fact, 10% of the SAFER money is specifically for recruiting and retention in all volunteer departments, NOT hiring. How would YOU use that 10 million that is specifically for recruiting and retention in an all volunteer department, within the grant guidelines? Remember, you can't hire with it!

                      Lastly, can I suggest Decaf?

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Culpster
                        How rediculous... Uniforms???? WTF???? I really hope that ANY SAFER $$$$ went towards uniforms!!!!! All we wanted was one BODY!!! We would go to goodwill and get some pants for that body, just so we can be that extra safe!!!!!

                        I there are dept's using SAFER $$$$ for uniforms, you can go you know what to yourself...

                        Sorry, but SAFER is for Firefighters, and we would never try and use it to "bend the rules."
                        Culpster, i do not take personal offense to your comments as You are entitled to express your opinion and i understand that your opinion is not directed as a personal assault to me. I do feel obligated, since i started this thread, to clarify our position in the hope that it will help to broaden your horizon and understanding of what it takes to build and maintain a volunteer department. I'm too new at all of this to be considered any sort of expert, so you would be wise to seek additional counsel and input.

                        I too would take issue with full Class A's for our department. "Uniform pants and shirts" were requested at $75 per head times 20. Compared to doing funeral details in Goodwill ensembles and school/pre-school presentations in street clothes it will be a great moral booster when we get it done. Grant or no grant, it will happen. For our area and what we do, full blown Class A's at $400 to $700 a pop would be ludicrous and should be a matter of individual choice and investment.

                        Our needs assessment revealed that:
                        A. We need to Recruit 4 BODIES available for weekday calls. At best we are at 3 in 15 minutes on most weekdays, 6 takes much longer. (see NFPA 1720)
                        AND
                        B. We need to Retain our current BODIES for the other 18 hours/day.

                        Seemed to be within the scope of the Program Guidance. As some others have mentioned here, the ability to don identifying articles with pride can create a tremendous bond that secures responders to us. Look around you, even non-conformists conform to each other through attire and appearance.

                        In terms of cost-benfit return, $1,500 seems very cheap to help retain just one volunteer for one year. The impression made on a 2nd grader who sees us walk into class in a white uniform shirt instead of work clothes/jeans cannot be measured.

                        I take no personal issue with using federal funding to help career and combo departments hire FF's. Makes me a little more satisfied as a taxpayer compared to many, many other areas that get funded with our tax dollars. In SAFER, i have a personal an issue with LOSAP as an eligible project, but it's in there and i'll not begrudge those who choose to avial themselves of such an opportunity.

                        Most of the folks on this forum work hard at the craft of fundraising, and our department has benefitted greatly from the direct and indirect input of all the contributors here. Culpster, all of us have needs for our own departments. Hang around with us for a few months and you'll find that you will get better at what you are trying to do. And whatever you do, don't give up on the system--let's figure out how to get you that one slot filled.

                        earl

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Actually we only went for one firefighter this year BC, and last year we went for two. We feel that the justification of giving us one body this year is very appropriate in accordance with the guid lines in which we gave all the hard data to back it up.

                          With our combination department, and responding to over 1100 (750 ems and over 350 fire) calls a year, we provide spectacular service to our area with what many would cry foul with the numbers we do have (being 35 firefighters, 7 fulltime (fulltime chief and fulltime assistant chief) and 24 paid on call). We run 3 shifts on our full time side. Our city has graciously allowed to hire 1 full time this year to have two shifts with 3 firefighters (but this position will not be filled until Oct).

                          Due to increasing fuel and energy costs (up over 50% and 30% in the last year), we barely squeeked by getting one FF this year.

                          I just think that with todays economy, and all the BS bashing we get now in the press, that these departments better start becoming more fiscally responsible and ask the bare minimum... that means NO UNIFORMS...

                          Cant wait till the press gets this one....

                          i.e. ask for the bare minimum and help spread the wealth to other departments who need it... we'll firgure out how to get those uniforms, we are firefighters, we are resourcefull!!!!!!

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            City Of Onalaska, Wisconsin
                            2006 adopted budget $7,052,285
                            Fire Department budget
                            $797,847
                            If this was your department's budget-than uniforms would not be a problem.

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Culpster,
                              Our departments have the same needs--Firefighters, equipment and fuel. Our communities are different, so the ways to fill those needs is different. Our annual operating budget is $35,000. You run 8 times the calls, so since you are so fiscally conservative i assume your budget is about $300,000. NO--it's got to be much higher, and it's well justified. And, like almost every other community in the US, funding is tight. If you are so hard-core on "bare minimum", why ask for $80,000-$100,000 (and an equal amount from local gov't) for one person to work 2000 hours/year when a $50,000 advertising blitz might generate 7 or 8 who could donate 600 hours each?? On the surface that would seem more cost-effective--but it isn't what your community needs. So you are trying to use this program to fill your need. So are we.

                              If i was going to try to "bend the rules", i'd have been looking for ways to divert funds to fuel and equipment and a brush truck. Not gonna cheat, never. These are very good (though not perfect) programs and i will not be party to their downfall if i can help it. When our applications are not awarded, my assumption is that either somebody else's other need is greater OR i didn't present our need will enough OR i missed something in the program guidance. Much healthier attitude to show the press than whining in a corner about what the rules are. If you disagree with the rules, work on a committee that builds them instead of accusing others who are trying to follow them of bending them.

                              The press?? They love charges of waste, abuse, fraud, and "bending the rules"--even when they are unfounded and thrown out in anger. I'm trying to better understand the system and find out what is and isn't eligible, and you're screaming abuse. Where do you think "the press" comes up with some of the fodder they report? Wanna talk about preposterous stuff??? How about the building opinion in this thread that our ineligible activity was more likely TRAINING than uniforms? There's the story for the National Enquirer.

                              Have a nice day.

                              earl

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Culpster
                                I just think that with todays economy, and all the BS bashing we get now in the press, that these departments better start becoming more fiscally responsible and ask the bare minimum... that means NO UNIFORMS...
                                Tim,

                                I again state, what works for your department may not work
                                for mine.

                                We are a completely volunteer department. No paid on call,
                                no stipend, just recognition.

                                We have to increase public recognition of our volunteers, and one of the ways to do so is by providing distinctive jackets. With that public recognition comes retention and recruiting of new members.

                                I would venture a guess that my departments total operating budget is less than the money your department spends on public education.

                                You talk about hiring with the SAFER money, which is not an option for us. There is no way we can afford the continuing expense for employing a
                                full time person. We have to find ways to get more VOLUNTEERS.

                                That kind of request fits totally with the intent and letter of the SAFER
                                grant program.

                                What is wrong with that?

                                Comment

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