Public Safety Grant News 2014

 

FEMA Updates for FY2014 Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grants

FEMA Fire Grant News

 

January 27, 2014 - FEMA has released information and tools for fire service organizations intending to apply for the FY2014 Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grants.

 

New Technical Assistance Tools Available for FY2014 Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grants

 

Start planning your FY 2014 SAFER Grant application now! These tools were produced specifically to help potential applicants begin to plan their 2014 applications ahead of the application period. The tools can be viewed on the AFG website or downloaded to your computer.

 

FY 2014 SAFER Application Assistance Tools

 

  • Application Checklist: This checklist will help you prepare your SAFER grant application
  • Self-Evaluation - Hiring of Firefighters: Rehiring, retention, attrition, and new hires; career, combination, and volunteer fire departments
  • Self-Evaluation - Recruitment and Retention - Fire Departments: Combination and volunteer fire departments
  • Self-Evaluation - Recruitment and Retention - Interest Organizations: National, State, Local, or Tribal Volunteer Firefighters Interest Organizations
  • FY 2014 SAFER Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
  • Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA): Program Guidance SAM.gov Get Ready Guide: Sam.gov application preparation guide

 

SAFER Grants Help Desk: If you have questions about the technical assistance tools listed below, call or e-mail the SAFER Grants help Desk. The toll-free number is 1-866-274-0960; the e-mail address for questions is firegrants@fema.dhs.gov.

 

SAM.gov Registration is Required to Apply & Receive Grants

 

The FY2014 SAFER application period will be here before you know it. All eligible applicants must be registered and active in the System for Award Management (SAM) before you can submit an application. Per 2 CFR § 25.205, FEMA may not make an award to an entity until the entity has complied with the requirements to provide a valid DUNS number and maintain an active SAM registration with current information. The System for Award Management (SAM) consolidates federal procurement systems and the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA).

 

To register, or validate your information, please visit: https://www.sam.gov/portal/public/SAM/

 

SAM.gov Registration Tips: Please ensure the following items are current in SAM and the DUNS number used in SAM is the same one you use for all FEMA applications:

 

  • Organization’s name
  • Address
  • DUNS number
  • EIN
  • Banking information (type of account (checking or saving), routing number, and account number
  • Many websites may look official in appearance but are not. As a reminder, registration in the System for Award Management (SAM) is FREE
  • SAM registration is only active for one year and must be renewed annually.
  • FEMA has prepared a technical assistance document, the SAM.gov Get Ready Guide. This document is designed to walk you through the SAM.gov registration process
  • This information should be consistent in all registration documents

 

Should you need assistance with your SAM.gov account, there are several ways to get help:

 

 

If you have questions or concerns about your SAM registration, please contact the Federal Support desk at https://www.fsd.gov

 

Submitting Preparer Information

 

FEMA requires that all applicants disclose the name, address and contact information of the person or organization, to include contracted grant writers, who are responsible for preparing the SAFER application. Please ensure that this information is accurate at the time of submission. As a reminder, all applicants must attest that all information contained within the application, including preparer information, must be true, complete and accurate to the best of your knowledge. If you contract with a grant writer, and they either refuse, or provide advice to not list them in the preparer information section of the application, please notify the SAFER program office.

 

Attention to Detail & Completeness of Your Application

 

SAFER is one of the most highly competitive grant programs offered through the Federal government. It is important to ensure the accuracy of the information submitted as part of your application, to include, but not limited to, your department's demographic information, call volume, staffing levels, comprehensive budget breakdowns, recruitment and retention rates, if applicable, as well as the required narrative statements.

 

Recruitment and Retention Regional Applications: Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Requirement

 

FY 2014 regional awardees will be required to produce, upon FEMA's request, a signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), or similar document. This document will serve to demonstrate that all parties identified as part of the application have agreed to participate in the application, understand their roles and responsibilities as part of any award, and to further identify the distribution and use of any grant funded assets or services. The MOU must be signed and dated by all participating entities. Additional guidance regarding the requirement for MOU's may be found in the FY 2014 SAFER Funding Opportunity Announcement.

 

 

DHS Adopted Revised Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) – The Super Circular

FEMA Fire Grant News

 

January 27, 2014 - The Office of Management of Budget (OMB) published federal government-wide regulation (known as a Super Circular) on administrative requirements, cost principles and audit requirements on December 26, 2014.

 

The "Super Circular" provides guidance on administrative aspects for federal grants (e.g., how grants are awarded, managed, audited and closed out). The government-wide framework for grants management is intended to reduce administrative burden for non-federal entities receiving federal awards while reducing the risk of waste, fraud and abuse.

DHS is expected to publish regulations that will make the regulations applicable to FEMA grants issued on or after December 26, 2014. SAFER applicants and grantees are strongly encouraged to review 2 C.F.R. Part 200 in its entirety, because it does contain substantive changes.

 

For additional information regarding Part 200 of the Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.), the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (“Super Circular” or “Omni Circular”), please utilize the links below.

 

 

 

Survey to Identify Challenges in Implementing Community Risk Reduction Programs in the Fire Service

FEMA Fire Grant News

 

January 27, 2014 - The Vision 20/20 Project is conducting an important voluntary survey to identify challenges to implementing Community Risk Reduction programs in the fire service.

 

This survey is part of research being undertaken by Vision 20/20, a project of the Institution of Fire Engineers (IFE) - U.S. Branch, which has the IAFC, IAFF, NFPA, NVFC, and many other major fire organizations represented on its Steering Committee. The results will be shared widely to benefit those who want a better understanding of how to expand the concepts of community risk reduction throughout the fire service.

 

There are two versions of the survey that we are asking to have completed, one for line (operations) firefighters and another for those in charge of fire safety education programs. The data is confidential and only summary results will be used. The survey takes about five minutes to complete and can be accessed from any device with an internet connection, at work or from home.

 

Vision 20/20 is asking that the survey be completed as soon as possible. Your department’s participation is very much appreciated.

 

Link for firefighters: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/LineFirefightersOnly_v2. Ideally, this would be filled out by at least 10 firefighters from your department.

 

Link for heads of fire safety education programs: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/HeadPublicFireSafetyEducationOnly_v2

 

Additional background on the survey can be found at www.strategicfire.org. Note: due to overlapping email distribution lists you may receive more than one notice for this survey.

 

 

NIJ Policing Research Priorities for FY2015

Interest in Proposals for Policing Research

 

Office of Justice Programs (OJP) Law Enforcement Grant News

 

January 7, 2015 - The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) has issued a Dear Colleague letter to alert social and behavioral science researchers to its interest in receiving proposals related to policing and crime that can strengthen the knowledge base and enhance criminal justice practices. For Fiscal Year 2015, the NIJ Office of Research and Evaluation's particular interests in policing include topics such as:

 

  • Police use of force, police legitimacy and de-escalation strategies.
  • Officer safety and wellness and intervention programs.
  • Evaluations of body-worn cameras, their benefits, costs and potential concerns.
  • Evaluations of internal and external procedural justice training mechanisms and public trust.
  • Randomized controlled trials of police patrol practices and their impact on crime reduction or prevention.
  • The impact on police investigations of changes in policing and new technologies.
  • The utility and effectiveness of eyewitness identification procedures.
  • The impact of social media on policing and its efficacy.

 

Other topics of research on policing are also valuable. NIJ is interested in building sound, evidence-based knowledge of interventions or programs that work in a variety of organizations under varied circumstances.

 

The "Research and Evaluation on Justice Systems" solicitation should be available on the NIJ website in early 2015. In all cases, prospective applicants are highly encouraged to consult with relevant project officers prior to submission, Dr. Brett Chapman at Brett.Chapman@ojp.usdoj.gov and Mr. Eric Martin at Eric.D.Martin@ojp.usdoj.gov.

 

Learn more about NIJ's FY2015 policing research priorities. Read the full letter.

 

 

FEMA Information Bulletin (IB) 400 & 2 C.F.R. Part 200

FEMA Fire Grant News

 

December 31, 2014 - FEMA Information Bulletin (IB) 400: FEMA Information Bulletin (IB) 400 provides guidance and information regarding FEMA's implementation of Title 2, Part 200 of the Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.), the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards ("Super Circular" or "Omni Circular").

 

These new regulations are in effect now, and will apply to all new FEMA grant awards that are made on or after December 26, 2014.

 

The new regulations will supersede 44 C.F.R. Part 13, and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circulars A-21, A-87, A-89, A-102, A-110, A-122, A-133, and sections of A-50 for all FEMA awards made on or after December 26, 2014.

 

Background on 2 C.F.R. Part 200, The Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards ("Super Circular" or "Omni Circular")

 

2 C.F.R. Part 200 provides guidance on the administrative aspects of federal grants (e.g. how grants are awarded, managed, audited, and closed-out). Administrative requirements associated with FEMA grants will be affected by the Super Circular. The Super Circular does NOT change the programmatic substance of FEMA's financial assistance programs. For example, 2 C.F.R. Part 200 will not change:

 

  • Eligibility criteria for non-disaster grant programs;
  • The statutory purposes and objectives of FEMA's non-disaster grant programs; and
  • The statutorily-allowable costs and activities under FEMA's non-disaster grant programs.

 

Effective Date for C.F.R. Part 200

 

The Super Circular will apply to non-disaster grants that FEMA awards on or after December 26, 2014. With the exception of the audit requirements in Subpart F. The Super Circular will not apply retroactively to existing FEMA non-disaster awards. For existing FEMA non-disaster grants awarded before December 26, 2014, recipients and subrecipients should continue to follow the applicable legacy regulations identified in the terms and conditions of their award packages.

 

2 C.F.R. Part 200 Change Highlights

 

The following list identifies some of the areas where substantive changes in 2 C.F.R. Part 200 that will impact AFG award recipients. AFG grantees are encouraged to become familiar with the changes and the requirements of each section. Current AFG award recipients must continue to follow the terms and conditions of their individual awards.

 

  • § 200.112 Conflict of Interest
  • §200.204 Federal Awarding Agency Review of Merit Proposals
  • §200.307 Program Income
  • §200.308 Revision of Budget and Program Plans
  • §200.309 Period of Performance
  • §200.313 Equipment

 

Please refer to the links below for additional information.

 

FEMA Information Bulletin (IB) 400 & 2 C.F.R. Part 200 Links

 

Recipients and subrecipients of FEMA awards are strongly encouraged to review 2 C.F.R. Part 200 in its entirety, because it does contain substantive changes.

 

For additional information regarding Part 200 of the Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.), the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards ("Super Circular" or "Omni Circular"), please utilize the links below.

 

 

The FY 2014 application period's for both programs are right around the corner.The application periods are currently scheduled for the following dates (subject to change):

 

  • Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER): February 9, 2015 – March 6, 2015
  • Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S): March 16, 2015 – April 17, 2015

 

Begin preparing your application now by reviewing the guidance materials that are available now. It is important to read the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) thoroughly. The FOA contains the key programmatic updates and application requirements necessary, for all eligible applicants.

 

You can view the 2014 SAFER and 2014 FP&S Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA) below:

 

 

 

FY2014 SAFER and FP&S Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA) Available Now

FEMA Fire Grant News

 

December 24, 2014 - The Funding Opportunity Announcements for the FY 2014 Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) and the 2014 Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S) Grant Programs are now available online!

 

The FY 2014 application period’s for both programs are right around the corner.The application periods are currently scheduled for the following dates (subject to change):

 

  • Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER): February 9, 2015 – March 6, 2015
  • Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S): March 16, 2015 – April 17, 2015

Begin preparing your application now by reviewing the guidance materials that are available now. It is important to read the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) thoroughly. The FOA contains the key programmatic updates and application requirements necessary, for all eligible applicants.

 

You can view the 2014 SAFER and 2014 FP&S Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA) below:

 

 

 

FY2012 Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S) Closeout Module Not Yet Available

FEMA Fire Grant News

 

December 24, 2014 - The closeout module for FY 2012 FP&S awards is currently not available. As such, no closeout may be submitted, or is required, at this time.

 

Upon the deployment of the module all FY 2012 FP&S grantees will receive a notification via the AFG e-grant system. From the date of that notification, grantees will have 90 days to submit your closeout report as allotted per 44 CFR §13.50 (b).

 

As the inability to submit the closeout is due to a system issue, no negative consequences shall arise due to the delinquency of closeout reports prior to the closeout module being available to the grantees and the aforementioned 90 days. It is anticipated that the FY 2012 FP&S closeout module will be available in July of 2015.

 

When the module becomes available and if additional assistance is required, please review the closeout tutorial (http://www.fema.gov/rules-tools/2011-closeout-report-tutorial-introduction) and/or contact our help desk (1-866-274-0960).

 

 

NIMS Alert 04-14: FEMA Releases Search and Rescue Resource Typing Definitions

FEMA Releases Search and Rescue Resource Typing Definitions

 

December 15, 2014 - FEMA has released for final publication and distribution, 8 Search and Rescue resource typing definitions. The guidance contained in these definitions provides a consistent set of minimum criteria for use by the whole community when building, sustaining, inventorying, and delivering capabilities in support of the National Preparedness System (NPS). The Search and Rescue resource typing definitions are:

 

  • Structural Collapse Search Team
  • Structural Collapse Search Technician
  • Structural Collapse Search Team Leader
  • Structural Collapse Rescue Team
  • Structural Collapse Rescue Technician
  • Structural Collapse Rescue Team Leader
  • Urban Search and Rescue Task Force
  • Urban Search and Rescue Task Force Leader

 

FEMA developed these resource typing definitions in collaboration with search and rescue, emergency management and public safety practitioners. These stakeholders suggested guidance for specific overall functions, components, capabilities, and ordering specifications for these resources.

 

These resource types align with the National Incident Management System (NIMS) by providing a common and standard understanding of the tools and resources needed to sustain, build, and deliver the core capabilities necessary to achieve the National Preparedness Goal. Further, this guidance addresses standardized criteria for requests that are made under a variety of mutual aid scenarios from automatic aid to mutual aid provided through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC) during declared disasters.

 

Resource typing definitions and job title/position qualifications can be accessed using the Resource Typing Library Tool (RTLT). The RTLT is an online catalogue of NIMS resource typing definitions and job titles/position qualifications. The RTLT is publically accessible here: www.fema.gov/national-incident-management-system/resource-management-mutual-aid.

 

For more information on NIMS and its implementation, visit FEMA's NIMS website.

 

Questions can be submitted to the National Integration Center through e-mail at: FEMA-NIMS@fema.dhs.gov.

 

 

Tax Credit Proposed for Volunteer First Responders

From KIWARadio.com and First Responder Grants

 

December 10, 2014 - Two Congressman have introduced legislation to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide a charitable deduction for the service of volunteer firefighters and emergency medical and rescue personnel.

 

"I have been proposing this type of solution for many years in my classes," says Kurt Bradley, Senior Grant Consultant at First Responder Grants, "and it looks like finally a US Congressman has proposed a bill to do exactly what I have been saying: give a tax credit to first responders who volunteer in their communities."

 

According to Chief Philip C. Stittleburg, Chairman of the National Volunteer Fire Council, "This common sense bill would help bolster staffing in volunteer public safety agencies by allowing responders to claim a portion of the value of the services they donate each year as a charitable donation."

 

The full story is available from Iowa, West Virginia Congressmen Propose Bill to Help Emergency First Responders | KIWARadio.com.

 

"Write a letter and support this bill," says Bradley. "Have your US Congressional Representatives and Senators get behind it, now!"

 

 

Complete and Submit Your Application Now: The FY2014 Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) Application Period Closes on Fri., Dec. 5, 2014, 5 p.m. EST

Fire Grant News

 

December 4, 2014 - FINAL HOURS: The Assistance to Firefighters (AFG) application period closes on Friday, December 5. Applications must be received no later than 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time.

 

No exceptions will be made for submissions after 5 p.m. EST, so submit your application on time.

 

Complete your application today at www.fema.gov/e-grant-application-access.

 

 

Do Before You Submit: AFG Application Review Checklist

 

FEMA Fire Grant News

 

Nov. 26, 2014 - Before you submit your application to the FY2014 Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program (AFG), use this checklist to review your application. Remember: once submitted, you can no longer change or edit your application!

 

REMINDER: The Assistance to Firefighters (AFG) application period will close on Friday, December 5. Applications must be received no later than at 5 p.m. Eastern Time. No exceptions will be made for submissions after 5 pm Eastern Time so submit your application on time.

 

AFG Application Review Checklist

 

  • Proofread your application: Mistakes or errors on your AFG application can disqualify your organization for grant award consideration.
  • If you included any "filler" or placeholder text while filling out your application, update the application fields with your final and complete answers.
  • Do the sequences of your sentences and paragraphs present clear thoughts and ideas?
  • Does your narrative explain your organizations needs in a way that someone would easily understand?
  • Check your inventory amounts and costs for all items that you are requesting and confirm that there are no discrepancies between the Request Details Information section of the application and the Narrative.
  • Have all application fields, or questions, been answered?
  • Make sure that you have described your organizations needs in your voice, do not use boilerplate language or copy from vendors, manufacturers, etc.
  • Make sure that all facts and figures are accurate throughout the entire application.
  • Ask a colleague who is not involved with the actual writing of the grant to proofread your application.

 

Complete your application today at www.fema.gov/e-grant-application-access

 

 

Reminders for the FY2014 Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Application Period

FEMA Fire Grant News

 

Nov. 19, 2014 - There is still plenty of time to start and submit your application for the FY2014 Assistance to Firefighters Grant. The application period will close on Friday, December 5, 2014, at 5 p.m. E.S.T. Make every effort to submit your application early as no application will be accepted, for any reason, after the official close of the application.

 

The following information is provided to help ensure your organization has every opportunity to submit a competitive application with the best chance for funding.

 

Cost Share Calculations

 

AFG's authorization from Congress contained a change in the language as to how an applicant's cost share must be calculated. Historically, cost share was calculated based solely on the cost of the total project, multiplied by the applicants cost share percentage. The AFG authorization requires that an applicant's cost share be calculated based on the applicable cost share percentage of the "grant" (federal share) awarded. The AFG Program Office has made available a "cost share calculator" to assist applicants with identifying the appropriate cost share for their application. View the FY 2014 AFG Cost Share Calculator tool now.

 

Submitting Preparer Information

 

FEMA requires that all applicants disclose the name, address and contact information of the person or organization, to include contracted grant writers, who are responsible for preparing the AFG application. Please ensure that this information is accurate at the time of submission. As a reminder, all applicants must attest that all information contained within the application, including preparer information, must be true, complete and accurate to the best of your knowledge. If you contract with a grant writer, and they either refuse, or provide advice to not list them in the preparer information section of the application, please notify the AFG program office.

 

Regional Application: Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) Requirement

 

FY 2014 regional awardees will be required to produce, upon FEMA's request, a signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), or similar document. This document will serve to demonstrate that all parties identified as part of the application have agreed to participate in the application, understand their roles and responsibilities as part of any award, and to further identify the distribution and use of any grant funded assets or services. The MOU must be signed and dated by all participating entities. Additional guidance regarding the requirement for MOU's may be found in the FY 2014 AFG Funding Opportunity Announcement.

 

Attention To Detail and Completeness of Your Application

 

AFG is one of the most highly competitive grant programs offered through the Federal government. It is important to ensure the accuracy of the information submitted as part of your application, to include, but not limited to, your department's demographic information, call volume, equipment and vehicle inventories, comprehensive budget breakdowns, as well as the required narrative statements.

 

Importance of Closing out Grants in a Timely Manner

 

Grant regulations require that grantees complete the closeout report for their grant within 90 days of the close of the period of performance, or the availability of the AFG closeout module. Grantees who fail to complete their closeout report, including the request for reimbursement for all eligible grant expenses, may forfeit the ability to seek reimbursement at a later date. FEMA recently provided notification to all 2002-2009 grantees with open, or pending, closeout reports requesting prompt attention. As a reminder, failure to complete the required closeout reports may also impact future awards to your organization.

 

DHS to Adopt Revised Code Of Federal Regulations (CFR): The Super Circular

 

The Office of Management of Budget (OMB) published federal government-wide regulation (known as a Super Circular) on administrative requirements, cost principles and audit requirements on December 26, 2013. The "Super Circular" provides guidance on administrative aspects for federal grants (e.g., how grants are awarded, managed, audited and closed out). The government-wide framework for grants management is intended to reduce administrative burden for non-federal entities receiving federal awards while reducing the risk of waste, fraud and abuse. DHS is expected to publish regulations that will make the regulations applicable to FEMA grants issued on or after December 26, 2014. AFG applicants and grantees are encouraged to make themselves familiar with the new regulations as some may directly impact their organization. The AFG Program Office and Regional Fire Program Specialists are available to answer any questions regarding how the "Super Circular" may impact you.

 

 

Are you using the correct AFG User ID?

User ID Requirements for FY2014 AFG Applicants

 

FEMA Fire Grant News

 

Nov. 4, 2014 - The purpose of this message is to remind AFG applicants of the "User ID" requirements for creating or accessing AFG applications or awards. The FY2014 Assistance to Firefighter Grants application is now available. FEMA wants to remind everyone that only the unique "User ID" associated with your organization may be used to create or access an application.

 

Please read the following information to ensure a smooth start to your application process.

 

If your organization has applied in the past, you MUST use the user ID used to submit previous AFG applications. If you do not have access to that information, please do the following to request that information:

 

Send a letter explaining why you need this information, and if you also need to change the Primary Contact information. Please be aware changing the Primary Contact on one grant will cause the Primary Contact to be changed on all other department grants submitted under the same user ID. Contact changes may take up to three days to process. The letter must be on fire department letterhead and signed by the Fire Chief of the department. Fax or email a copy of the letter to Annette Robinson at 1-866-274-0942 or Annette.Robinson2@fema.dhs.gov.

 

DHS/FEMA/Grant Programs Directorate
Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program
Annette Robinson - Room 5026
Tech World Bldg - South Tower 5th Floor
500 C Street, SW
Washington, DC 20472-3620

 

The following information must be included in the letter:

 

  • Grant number
  • Previous primary contact person's name
  • Explanation of why access to the grant is needed
  • New contact person's name
  • New contact person's mother's maiden name
  • New contact person's date of birth
  • New contact person's e-mail address
  • Two phone numbers for the new contact person

 

Once processed, you will receive an e-mail from Pinky Sheets indicating the online system has been updated. You will also receive an automated e-mail from EOPS@dhs.gov with your user ID and temporary password.

 

If you do not receive this automated e-mail from EOPS@dhs.gov within two days of faxing your request and receiving the e-mail from Ms. Sheets, you should look in your junk mail file. The electronic e-mails are sometimes filtered and sent directly to junk mail.

 

If you are still unable to get a new user ID and password, go onto the Web site at www.fema.gov/firegrants and choose e-grant application. You will get an application sign-in screen. Click on forgot password, answer the two security questions and submit your request.

 

If you have represented a different organization in the past, YOU CANNOT use the user ID used to submit applications for the previous department. USER ID’s belong to the organization and NOT to the person filling out the application. In this instance use the USER ID that belongs to the new organization that you represent.

 

The creation of a NEW USER ID is only for organizations who have NEVER applied for AFG Grants in the past. This is for truly “New Users(organizations)”

 

If you have issues with logging in, please call the help desk 1-866-274-0960.