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  • #16
    $300K doesn't help. Regardless of age of vehicles $300K is the line of demarcation when your chances really go downhill. I mean REALLY go downhill. The only apps I put in this year asking for over $300K for federal share were quints. I didn't care what the truck was actually going to cost, if it was a pumper or tanker it was under $300K in fed share on the application. If that means the department comes out of pocket for 10%, then so be it. 90% off still isn't a bad deal.

    Heck, buy one get one free sales mean things are 50% off and that's the easiest way to get me to buy something. God help whoever is at the checkout counter if Sears goes 90% off, I will spend my kid's college fund on that.
    Brian P. Vickers
    www.vickersconsultingservices.com
    Emergency Services Consulting
    Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
    Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

    Comment


    • #17
      To play the nerd match game we all love, your $315K truck is:

      $63/resident
      $557/call, $3088/fire or rescue call, $26,250/structure fire call
      $4200/square mile

      When they start talking cost-benefit these are the types of numbers they are talking about. If the imaginary line is at $60/resident, you would have been back under $300K to make that mark. It only takes 1 detail to make the difference between Review and no Review.

      And Kurt, just wanted to make sure you weren't starting without the rest of us.
      Brian P. Vickers
      www.vickersconsultingservices.com
      Emergency Services Consulting
      Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
      Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

      Comment


      • #18
        At what point does call volume begin to play a role in this as well? I know a department that recieved an early DJ a couple years ago because of what was described in their letter as being a problem with not having the runs. I'm sure there might have been other factors that came into play for them, but the primary content of the letter eluded to their total number of runs.

        Comment


        • #19
          Denial letters are programmattically created based on relative metrics. So about the only thing that means anything is the date of denial and whether or not you made Peer Review. The late denials last year held a little more in that they alluded to a section or two that were not quite up to par. But those were also created based on relative score so it was a nice way of saying close but cigar.
          Brian P. Vickers
          www.vickersconsultingservices.com
          Emergency Services Consulting
          Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
          Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

          Comment


          • #20
            Originally posted by BC79er
            Heck, buy one get one free sales mean things are 50% off and that's the easiest way to get me to buy something. God help whoever is at the checkout counter if Sears goes 90% off, I will spend my kid's college fund on that.
            Oh Lord, if Outdoor World ever does 50%- 90% then I'm a goner. My wife will be the first to buy a shotgun and phsyically march me out the door!
            Kurt Bradley
            Fire/EMS/EMA Grant Consultant
            " Never Trade Skill for Luck"

            Comment


            • #21
              Originally posted by ktb9780
              Oh Lord, if Outdoor World ever does 50%- 90% then I'm a goner. My wife will be the first to buy a shotgun and phsyically march me out the door!
              I had to resist spending a LOT of money I didn't have when Bass Pro had a sale last week for public safety personnel. God forbid they do something like what you're describing

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              • #22
                Oops, thought I was in another discussion. Original post.....deleted.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by wfd4fireman
                  I have observed numerous communities in my state that are well-off receive grants whereas others such as my own has been denied annually and this small city has lost industry a-plenty and tax revenue and thus the apparatus program is on hold. Anybody have a good word of encouragement?
                  Well, I can tell you that the grant people, whoever they may be, don't really care that your dept. has no money. It all relies on how your narrative is worded. Just because your truck is dying doesn't mean (to them) that you need to replace it. If you said "our truck needs replaced" or something to that affect, you aren't getting the grant. But if you were to word it like "our primary pumper, which protects ***** citizens has been a great financial burden to the community. If it is not replaced, the next depat. is ****miles away, which puts our community at risk". Maybe not exactly like that, but sugar-coated. The more you pull at their heart strings and explain your need and how it will help a great number of people, the greater your chance.
                  J.J. Bichard, Chief
                  Devola Vol. Fire Co.
                  Marietta, Ohio

                  "A few, serving many"

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Eureka!

                    Originally posted by BC79er
                    $300K doesn't help. Regardless of age of vehicles $300K is the line of demarcation when your chances really go downhill. I mean REALLY go downhill. The only apps I put in this year asking for over $300K for federal share were quints. I didn't care what the truck was actually going to cost, if it was a pumper or tanker it was under $300K in fed share on the application. If that means the department comes out of pocket for 10%, then so be it. 90% off still isn't a bad deal.

                    Heck, buy one get one free sales mean things are 50% off and that's the easiest way to get me to buy something. God help whoever is at the checkout counter if Sears goes 90% off, I will spend my kid's college fund on that.
                    Now there is a piece of useful information. Thanks! Wouldn't it be so much easier if they'd just say that up front in the program guidance? Then we wouldn't have to play these damn guessing games.

                    Whoa, wait a minute. I've read in other threads where they will call and see if you will agree to reduce your grant. How does that happen? Wouldn't they do the same for us?

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      [QUOTE=Chief310]
                      Originally posted by BC79er
                      310, about the only thing you can do to make a truck app more competitive is to make sure you're asking for the right truck. Since they don't'recognize hybrids sometimes you need to change from pumper to tanker and vice-versa to give yourself a better chance. Applying for the wrong one will get you computer booted.
                      QUOTE]

                      So what's the "right" truck to ask for? We currently operate a 15-year-old pumper, a 33-year-old pumper, and a 13-year-old tanker. Since the tanker is the newest vehicle in our fleet (not counting EMS), I don't see how asking for another one would help our application.

                      On the application this year, they asked about the age of our fleet with a series of "pull-downs", three of them if my memory is correct. In each case, our answers were the best (oldest) that were possible, with the exception of the question about the average age of our entire fleet, which was the second best selection available (having EMS vehicles included artificially lowers the average fleet age, but that's the subject for another rant).

                      We requested $315 K for a CAFS pumper

                      We cover 75 square miles, 5,000 population, and we average 566 runs per year (12 structure fires, 3 vehicle fires, 2 grass fires, 32 rescue calls, 22 hazardous condition, 12 service calls, 75 false alarms, 404 EMS calls & 7 "other")

                      So, if anyone can tell us the "Right" truck to ask for, we'll give it a try.

                      Well, asking for a truck that will serve multiple purposes and assist other areas will definitley help. The more you will help, the better your chances.
                      J.J. Bichard, Chief
                      Devola Vol. Fire Co.
                      Marietta, Ohio

                      "A few, serving many"

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Actually, pull at the heart strings and watch your chances go down. The last thing any reviewer wants to do is hear a violin in the background while they're reading a narrative. No sugar coating, no 'the world is going to end'.

                        And no they're not going to publish the cost-benefit calculations because that's how people defraud the system. Just like any other test, those who know the answers don't study and then fail when it's a cumulative test (changes as questions are answered). You have to understand the concepts behind the scoring metrics in order to understand how the work. I don't know them either, I've just handled 1000s of applications to give it me best nerd-analysis. Seems to have worked pretty well so far.
                        Brian P. Vickers
                        www.vickersconsultingservices.com
                        Emergency Services Consulting
                        Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
                        Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Brian is right about tugging heartstrings in DHS programs. You have to keep in mind these are "peer reviewed". Tuggin at heartstrings in a corprorate grant, where it is being graded by the wives of Fortune 500 CEOs is another story but, never lose sight of your target audience here. Fellow FFs don't need a serenade about " woe is me". They want hard cold facts.
                          Kurt Bradley
                          Fire/EMS/EMA Grant Consultant
                          " Never Trade Skill for Luck"

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Those are our Gurus, and i follow their trail. But, i still look for one or two "money lines" that paint a vivid picture for the reviewer to score. Not sappy, flowery, or eco-friendly--just a short sentence that tells them all they wanted to know in the first place.

                            My opinion, your mileage may vary.
                            earl

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              My Chief and I were talking today and wondering about some things that might be working against us.

                              first-
                              There are two departments with stations within the city limits of my community. My department which responds inside the city limits and 3 blocks away a Rural Fire district station which responds to the surrounding farmland. We have similiar names, and get each other's mail all the time. It doesn't help that their fire chief works for the city. I would think the computer could keep us straight, but if there is logic added to find departments that try to apply under two different names????

                              second-
                              We thought we were submitting our NFIRS reports properly until two weeks ago when the State sent a report out that said we had a total of 7 calls last year (Instead of 83, no medical). Apparently the export process wasn't working properly. It is now fixed and they have the right numbers, but if there was a discrepency between what we reported on our application and what FEMA had on file, would that kick us out?

                              I know we are still early in the process. We have always gotten positive feedbacks on our naratives in the past, but always get rejected by the computer. There isn't enough feedback in the Dear John process to understand why we can't get past that stage.

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                kd, the computer keeps you from getting your narratives read, unless you're talking about different applications. Some getting through & getting positive feedback, others getting computer denied. Positive feedback on narratives doesn't do much good unless you make it past the computer, which is done through proper analysis & project design.

                                The NFIRS thing wouldn't matter, lots of people have numbers and don't report. It's not a requirement to report before a grant award, just after so it's not a deal breaker.

                                If you have 2 stations 3 blocks apart then there should be 1 department. This RFD/city department arrangement is killing more apps than people realize. Do we have to lose a rural FF in the line of duty b/c the "city" truck shuts off when it hits the city limits? If the city FD responds with everything but the "city" truck and 4 FFs to a rural M/A call, is the city really protected any better than if they made the call and had M/A cover?
                                Brian P. Vickers
                                www.vickersconsultingservices.com
                                Emergency Services Consulting
                                Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
                                Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

                                Comment

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