National Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) Competitive Grant

BJA

Reduce SAK backlogs, solve more sexual assaults & reduce violent crime

Grant Website

Grant Guidelines

CFDA Number(s): 16.833 — National Sexual Assault Kit Initiative

Funding Opportunity Number: BJA-2019-15228

Grant Deadline: Apr. 9, 2019

Address the issue and impact of unsubmitted sexual assault kits (SAKs)

This National Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) Competitive Grant program supports the Department of Justice’s mission by improving state and local jurisdictions’ capacities to respond to violent crime; and the functioning of the criminal justice system through the investigation and prosecution of cases resulting from SAK evidence and the collection of lawfully owed DNA.

What this grant does for your agency

This National Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) Competitive Grant program supports the Department of Justice’s mission by improving state and local jurisdictions’ capacities to respond to violent crime; and the functioning of the criminal justice system through the investigation and prosecution of cases resulting from SAK evidence and the collection of lawfully owed DNA.

What this grant does for your agency

SAKI supports the Department’s criminal justice priorities of reducing violent crime and
supporting law enforcement officers and prosecutors by:

(1) providing jurisdictions with resources to address sexual assault kits (SAKs) in their custody that have not been submitted to a forensic laboratory for testing by Combined DNA Index System (CODIS)-eligible DNA methodologies;
(2) improving investigation and prosecution in connection with evidence and cases resulting from the testing process; and
(3) providing sites with resources to collect DNA samples from qualifying individuals who should have a sample in CODIS (based on the type and time of the offense in relation to applicable state law), but from whom a sample has never been collected or submitted to a laboratory for testing.

As part of this work, BJA will provide investigators with assistance in how to more effectively question subjects, which could provide stronger investigative leads and build stronger prosecutions, which in turn could help solve more crimes.

In addition to unsubmitted SAKs, SAKI addresses partially tested SAKs, as defined below. This program is not directed at untested kits that have been submitted to forensic labs for testing with CODIS-eligible DNA methodologies but are delayed for testing for longer than 30 days, for example, as a result of a laboratory backlog. A separate program addresses laboratory backlogs and capacity.

Agencies awarded the National Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) Competitive Grant receive funds to help them clear SAK backlogs.

Estimated Total Program Funding: $40,000,000

Award Ceiling: $2,500,000

Award Floor: $500,000

Expected Number of Awards: 28

Only a limited number of grants will be awarded.

Grant Eligibility

For full eligibility details, see the Grant Guidelines:

Eligible applicants for Purpose Areas 1, 2, 3, and 4 are state law enforcement agencies, units of local government, and federally recognized Indian tribal governments (as determined by the Secretary of the Interior), as well as governmental non-law enforcement agencies acting as their fiscal agents, and prosecutor’s offices.

For Purpose Area 2, eligible applicants are limited to small law enforcement agencies with
fewer than 250 sworn officers or consortia of small law enforcement agencies, including tribal law enforcement agencies.

An applicant who previously received an award under the National Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) is eligible to apply for funding under all purpose areas included in this solicitation.

About the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA)

BJA helps to make American communities safer by strengthening the nation’s criminal justice system: Its grants, training and technical assistance, and policy development services provide state, local, and tribal governments with the cutting edge tools and best practices they need to reduce violent and drug-related crime, support law enforcement, and combat victimization. More

Grant Deadline

Grant applications are due no later than 11:59 p.m. EST, Tues., Apr. 9, 2019.

Apply

Apply for the National Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) Competitive Grant

NIMS Alert 03-19: FEMA Seeks Feedback on Two NIMS Resource Management Documents

NIMS Alert FEMA

FEMA’s National Integration Center seeks public feedback on two NIMS Job Titles/Position Qualifications and Resource Typing Definitions regarding HAZMAT response released today under theEnvironmental Response/Health and Safety core capability.

NIMS is a key component of U.S. incident management efforts and enables organizations from across the country to work together during incidents of all kinds and sizes. Implementing NIMS across the nation is a fundamental part of building our national preparedness. NIMS Job Titles/Position Qualifications and Resource Typing Definitions define minimum qualifications and capabilities for personnel and their equipment within their assigned teams to manage all threats and hazards, regardless of the incident’s cause or size.

  1. To review the documents, visit:
  2. https://www.fema.gov/national-incident-management-system/national-engagement
  3. To provide comments on the draft, complete the feedback form on the webpage listed above and submit the form to fema-nims@fema.dhs.gov.
  4. The national engagement period for these two documents will end at 5 p.m. ET on March 28, 2019.

NIMS Alert 01-19: National Engagement Period: Proposed Updates to the National Emergency Communications Plan

NIMS Alert FEMA

The Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) is seeking feedback on proposed updates to the National Emergency Communications Plan (NECP)—the Nation’s strategic plan to improve emergency communications.

CISA is leading a national effort to update the NECP, which was last revised in 2014. The updated NECP aligns with the Communications and Information Management component in NIMS (National Incident Management System) and strives to prepare stakeholders for a rapidly evolving emergency communications landscape. Proposed updates reflect the expanding ecosystem of people, technologies, and functions involved in supporting emergency communications to aid public safety entities with addressing today’s challenges while also planning for future advancements.  

Informed by stakeholder input and a nationwide emergency communications survey, the NECP provides guidance to those that plan for, coordinate, invest in, and use communications to support response and recovery operations. This includes traditional emergency responder disciplines (e.g., law enforcement, fire, emergency medical services, dispatch) and other entities that share information during emergencies, such as medical facilities, utilities, nongovernmental organizations, as well as the media and private citizens.

To provide comments on the updated NECP, complete the feedback form on the DHS website and submit it to OECNECP@hq.dhs.gov by March 22, 2019.

We appreciate your assistance and contributions in updating the NECP. Questions regarding NECP efforts can be directed to OECNECP@hq.dhs.gov.

New Rural EMS grant coming soon

Ambulances

SIREN Act to help rural areas access EMS equipment, training & personnel

Signed into law in December 2018, the new Supporting and Improving Rural EMS Needs (SIREN) Act will help rural areas procure equipment, training, personnel recruitment and retention.

According to First Responder Grants Senior Grant Consultant Kurt Bradley, the SIREN Act is expected to offer grants with a $200K limit and a 10% matching requirement.

Grant administration and setup is still in process. As soon as we know more, we’ll let you know more.

In the meantime, if you are looking to run or improve EMS in a rural area, get to work on the 4 things grant winners have in common. Whenever SIREN opens, you can be first out of the gate to try for this new grant.

Will the border wall take your fire grant funding? New law says no

FDs, if you’ve been worried about grant funding getting reallocated for the border wall, some recent news should set you at ease.

President Trump has signed into law the Consolidated Fiscal Year 2019 Appropriations Act. This $333 billion spending package includes multi-million dollar increases to many grant programs. Here’s a breakdown of funding levels for various grants and agencies:

 * AFG and SAFER have been funded at $350M FOR EACH PROGRAM, which is level funding from 2018

 * State Fire Assistance program funded at $81 million, which is up $1 million from FY18

 * State Homeland Security Grant Program (SHSGP) funded at $525 million, which is $18 million up from FY18

 * United States Fire Administration (USFA) funded at $44.179 million (plus another $1.5 million for National Fire Academy infrastructure improvements). FY18 funding was $42.9 million

 * Urban Area Search and Rescue System funded at $45.18 million, which is $10.15 million up from FY18

 * Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) funded at $640 million, which is $10 million up from FY18

* Volunteer Fire Assistance (VFA) program funded at $17 million, which is $1 million up from FY18

The upshot?

These crucial grant programs are healthy. You can safely ignore any doom-and-gloom nonsense circulating in the media or around the station table.

If you haven’t already, get working on those SAFER applications, start prepping for FY19 AFG, and look into any other Federal program that might benefit your department.

Congress and the President have done their job on allocating the funds. Now it’s your turn to get to work on winning those grants!

FY 2019 Staffing for Adequate Fire & Emergency Response Grants (SAFER)

Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grants

$350,000,000 in fire jobs grants

Grant Website

Grant Guidelines

Grant Application Period: 8:00 a.m. ET, Friday, February 15, 2019 — 5:00 p.m. ET., Friday, March 22, 2019

NOFO Number: DHS-18-GPD-083-000-99

300 awards estimated for US Fire Service Organizations

The purpose of the SAFER Grant Program is to provide funding directly to fire departments and volunteer firefighter interest organizations to assist in increasing the number of firefighters to help communities meet industry minimum standards and attain 24-hour staffing to provide adequate protection from fire and fire-related hazards, and to fulfill traditional missions of fire departments.

The objective of the SAFER grant program is to assist local fire departments with staffing and deployment capabilities to respond to emergencies and assure that communities have adequate protection from fire and fire-related hazards. Local fire departments accomplish this by improving staffing and deployment capabilities so they may more effectively and safely respond to emergencies. With enhanced staffing levels, recipients should experience a reduction in response times and an increase in the number of trained personnel assembled at the incident scene.

Kurt says…

These are the areas where the NOFO indicated that the information is different from previous years

Applicants may now request to waive the position cost limit for new firefighters.

Pursuant to IB 427, applicants must indicate when they apply for an award whether they are requesting a waiver and what requirement they seek to waive.

The simplified acquisition threshold increased to $250,000.

The definition of “new recruit.”

Updated prioritization and eligibility tables.

What this grant does for your agency

Although not required for a SAFER grant, it is preferable that the enhanced staffing levels of all SAFER recipients should ensure that all first-arriving apparatus are staffed with a minimum of four qualified personnel (to meet National Fire Protection Association.

(NFPA) 1710/1720 standards) who are capable of initiating the suppression response. Ultimately, SAFER recipients should achieve more efficient responses and safer incident scenes, thereby ensuring communities have improved protection from fire and fire-related hazards.

SAFER offers grants to support projects in two activities. This NOFO provides potential eligible applicants with application requirements and details for processing and evaluating applications for financial assistance for both of these activity areas:

Hiring of Firefighters Activity is to hire new, additional firefighters to improve staffing levels or changing the status of part-time or paid-on-call firefighters to full-time firefighters

Recruitment and Retention of Volunteer Firefighters Activity is to assist fire departments with the recruitment and retention of volunteer firefighters who are involved with or trained in the operations of firefighting and emergency response

Agencies awarded the FY 2019 Staffing for Adequate Fire & Emergency Response Grants (SAFER) receive funds to recruit and hire firefighters.

Only a limited number of grants will be awarded:

Available funding for the NOFO: $350,000,000

Projected number of Awards: 300

Grant Eligibility

For full eligibility details, see the Grant Guidelines.

About FEMA

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) helps people before, during, and after disasters. More

Grant Deadline

Grant applications are due no later than 11:59 p.m. EST, Friday, Mar. 22, 2019.

Apply

Funding Opportunity Number: DHS-18-GPD-083-000-99

Apply for the FY 2019 Staffing for Adequate Fire & Emergency Response Grants (SAFER)

JUST ANNOUNCED! FY 2018 SAFER Application Period: Feb. 15–Mar. 22, 2019

The FY 2018 SAFER application period will open on Friday, February 15, 2019 at 8:00 a.m. ET and will close on Friday, March 22, 2019 at 5:00 p.m. ET.

Start planning your FY 2018 SAFER Grant application now by reviewing the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO), and Economic Hardship Waivers Information Bulletin (IB), and technical assistance tools below. These tools were produced specifically to help potential applicants begin to plan their 2018 applications ahead of the application period. The tools can be viewed on the AFG website or downloaded to your computer.

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.

Critical infrastructure: Where it is might surprise you

“Critical infrastructure.” It’s a phrase you might find in many grant guidelines and requests for proposal. But what is it? Where is it? How much does your area have? The answers might surprise you.

What is critical infrastructure?

According to DHS, critical infrastructure comprises physical and virtual systems “so vital to the United States that their incapacitation or destruction would have a debilitating effect on security, national economic security, national public health or safety, or any combination thereof.”

There are 16 sectors:

  1. Chemical
  2. Commercial Facilities
  3. Communications
  4. Critical Manufacturing
  5. Dams
  6. Defense Industrial
  7. Emergency Services
  8. Energy
  9. Financial Services
  10. Food and Agriculture
  11. Government Facilities
  12. Healthcare and Public Health
  13. Information Technology
  14. Nuclear Reactors, Materials, and Waste Sector
  15. Transportation Systems
  16. Water and Wastewater

Where is critical infrastructure?

Critical infrastructure can be anywhere.

How much critical infrastructure does your area have?

And that, folks, can be the big hairy unknown. Critical infrastructure can be in or around your area, and you might not know it.

What to do about it?

We are working on some new resources to help agencies like yours plan around critical infrastructure and how to include details about critical infrastructure in grant applications.

What questions do you have about critical infrastructure? Please email Kurt Bradley and let us know!

The gift: How does the Federal Government Shutdown affect the grant programs?

The Fund Finder News

by Kurt Bradley, Senior Grants Consultant

Our Federal government is now in the longest shutdown in our country’s history. Concerned departments nationwide have been calling me and asking the same question: “Is this government shutdown going to affect grants?”

No simple answer

I wish there was a simple answer to that question. Unfortunately there is not. I will, however tell you what to expect. The news here may be a little better than what you expected, as long as you look at it from the right perspective.

First, everyone needs to take a deep breath. Remember, this is not the first time the government has shut down. Nor will it be the last.

Shutdowns have happened before

Partisan politics aside, the government has endured several past shutdowns (or “spending gaps,” to more accurately label them). In fact, there have been 18 government shutdowns since 1976. Each one has lasted anywhere from several days to several weeks.

Key point: Not one shutdown has resulted in any incidents deemed catastrophic in nature.

I personally have been a taxpaying adult, either employed by the government directly (military service), or in local government, or the private sector. I can say that none of those shutdowns ever affected me significantly either professionally nor personally.

How the shutdown is affecting federal grants

So, what is the shutdown doing to affect the grant programs? Well, I can tell you that the staff at FEMA, in the offices that cover our primary grants, are operating on a skeleton staff. Historically, during these shutdowns, several things will be or are occurring:

  1. They are operating with a skeleton staff, so emails may not be answered, phone calls are probably not being returned, amendments may not be moving through approval/disapproval status, EHP reviews are on hold and, certainly, no new grant programs will open while the shutdown is in effect.
  2. Drawdowns of awarded money may be delayed.
  3. Previously stated opening dates for programs will be pushed back.
  4. Peer review panels for the 2018 AFG grants will be delayed (as of this writing the 2018 AFG peer review panel has been moved to Feb. 24, 2019).
  5. SF425 and semi-annual performance reports will continue to be due on their respective dates.

The gift you’ve been given

Now, as soon as the shutdown is resolved things will get back on track and return to business as usual. But the news is not all that bad here folks, if you take a different perspective.

You have been given the gift of time!

The one thing that you have the least amount of control over as a public safety employee is your time. This shutdown is affording you additional time to prepare for 2019 grants. Remember, if you fail to prepare, you can prepare to fail when it comes to grant applications.

What to do with this gift of time

The question is, though, what should you be doing with this gift of time?

You should be making use of this time to plan out your upcoming projects for 2019 and 2020. Here are a few ideas:

  • Do some better research on your critical infrastructure
  • Dig into your data deeper
  • Update your department and community description
  • Develop and send out those surveys you need to win a Fire Prevention and Safety grant
  • Find out exactly how much putting a new fireman on the payroll is going to cost
  • Try to figure out where additional money can be identified that could be used to offset SAFER money and give you a stronger sustainability plan
  • Dig in and figure out how many times you are or are not complying with NFPA1710-1720

You should also be thinking about getting yourself and your department properly trained to incorporate proper grant strategy into your overall financial planning. Pick a school and go find out what the other folks are learning so your applications win more often. Explore the possibilities available to you by consulting with a true public safety grant consulting firm. Doing so can truly make a difference in your overall outcomes.

This too shall pass

This government shutdown will be over before you know it. In the meantime, take advantage of the extra time that it is affording you: Use this gift of time to get ready for upcoming grants in 2019 and 2020.

Kick off grant season with training

Join us in Tacoma, WA, Feb. 21-22, 2019

A new year is upon us. Will 2019 be a year where your department heads to the winner circle of grants… or will it be another year of “dear john letters” or grants that coulda-been-shoulda-been, but weren’t?

Whether government, private sector, or non-profit sources, hundreds of grants for public safety agencies will be opening up throughout the year. And if your agency is going to submit the best application you can, you’ll need the best public safety grant training that America has to offer.

Seats are still available at our upcoming grant-writing training in Tacoma, WA, Feb. 21-22. Join us today and get the training you need to get the grants that get the gear!