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.

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.

Grant reports due Dec. 31 for AFG winners/grant managers

RECENT FEDERAL GRANT RECIPIENTS: Pay attention to the end-of-year reports that are due Dec. 31!

If you have a 2016 or 2017 grant award that is still within its performance period, several reports may be due, such as:

  • SEMI-ANNUAL PERFORMANCE REPORTS. If you are still within your performance period, remember that every 6 months (from your award date until your period of performance is expired) you must fill out a semi-annual performance report.
  • SF-425 REPORT must be filled out and submitted within 30 days of Dec. 31 and June 15 if you are still in your performance period.
  • FINAL CLOSEOUT REPORTS. If your grant was awarded for 2015, 2016, or 2017, there is still no closeout module available to fill out. Just ignore till a 2015, 2016, or 2017 email regarding same is posted by AFG stating that the report closeout module is available.

Filing these reports is critical to keeping your award and staying “in the good books” with FEMA. Make sure you hit that Dec. 31 deadline!

NIMS Alert 33-18: FEMA Releases 2018 National Preparedness Report

NIMS Alert FEMA

FEMA has released the 2018 National Preparedness Report. In its seventh year, this report summarizes the nation’s progress toward becoming a more secure and resilient nation.

The report highlights lessons learned from previous responses, along with findings from preparedness activities. The events and activities captured in the report allow responders and emergency managers throughout the nation to better understand capabilities, identify shortfalls, and build capacity in preparation for future large-scale and catastrophic incidents.

The 2018 National Preparedness Report also identifies gains made in preparedness across the nation and identifies where challenges remain. These findings provide insights into preparedness and informs decisions about future program priorities, resource allocations, and community actions.

The 2018 Report considers select 2017 real-world incidents that tested the nation’s capabilities, preparedness trends from state, tribal and territory perspectives, and an overview of activities and investments to build and sustain capabilities. As a result, it provides in-depth evaluation of five core capabilities identified in previous reports as facing persistent preparedness challenges— Infrastructure Systems, Housing, Economic Recovery, Cybersecurity, and Operational Coordination.

Get the full report

FY2018 Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S) Grant Application Webinars & Assistance Tools

Fire Prevention & Safety (FP&S) GrantsRemember: The FY 2018 FP&S grant application period will open on Monday, November 12, 2018 at 8 AM ET and will close on Friday, December 21, 2018 at 5 PM ET.

Grant Application Webinars

The FP&S Program Office will host 2 webinars to help you with your FY 2018 FP&S grant application. The webinars will provide potential applicants with general information about the FP&S grant program, how to navigate the grant application, and tips for preparing an application. FP&S Program Officers will be available to answer questions.

Details and more: AFGP Workshop Schedule at FEMA.gov

FY 2018 Fire Prevention & Safety Application Assistance

Please make sure to thoroughly review the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) prior to beginning your application, as it contains the latest updates to the FY 2018 FP&S Grant Program. Begin preparing your application now by using the following application assistance tools:

  • FY 2018 Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) – This document contains key programmatic updates and application requirements for all eligible applicants.
  • FY 2018 FP&S Application Checklist – This checklist will help you prepare to answer questions within the grant application. Collecting this information will reduce the time and energy needed to complete your application.
  • FY 2018 FP&S Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) – This document contains answers to frequently asked questions about the FP&S Grant Program.
  • FY 2018 Research & Development (R&D) Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) – This document contains answers to frequently asked questions specifically about the Research and Development Activity within the FP&S Grant Program.
  • FY 2018 FP&S Self Evaluation Sheet – This Self Evaluation Sheet will help you understand the criteria that you must address in your Narrative Statement when applying for FP&S grants.
  • FY 2018 FP&S Cost Share Calculator – This calculator will help you understand and determine your organization’s cost share for FP&S grants.

All FEMA FP&S application assistance tools and resources

More about FY2018 FP&S

Build response capability & mitigate vulnerabilities: FEMA releases new Core Capability Development Sheets

NIMS Alert FEMA

FEMA’s Core Capability Development Sheets provide tools that organizations can use to build or sustain their capabilities and close identified gaps. The National Preparedness Goal establishes 32 Core Capabilities to address the greatest risks to the nation. Additional background information is available on FEMA’s Technical Assistance Program website.

Each sheet provides the following information, tailored to the Core Capability:

  • Training courses
  • Standardized capability targets
  • Nationally-typed resources
  • Planning partners
  • Validation support

Mission Areas include:

  • Prevention: The capabilities to avoid, prevent or stop a threatened or actual act of terrorism; focuses on ensuring optimal preparedness to prevent an imminent terrorist attack within the United States.
  • Protection: The capabilities to secure the homeland against acts of terrorism and manmade or natural disasters.
  • Mitigation: The capabilities to reduce the loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters.
  • Response: The capabilities to save lives, protect property and the environment, and meet basic human needs after an incident has occurred.
  • Recovery: The core capabilities to assist communities affected by an incident to recover effectively.

Go to the Core Capability Sheets

NIMS Alert 27-18: FEMA Announces Webinars about Updating the National Response Framework

NIMS Alert FEMA

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is holding webinars for stakeholders nationwide to discuss the agency’s efforts in updating the National Response Framework (NRF) to incorporate lessons learned from the unprecedented 2017 hurricane and wildfire season. First released in 2008, the NRF is a guide for how our nation responds to all types of disasters and emergencies. As part of FEMA’s renewed effort to build a national culture of preparedness, this update will include the following areas:

  • Additional emphasis on non-governmental capabilities to include the role of individuals and private sector/industry partners in responding to disasters;
  • A new Emergency Support Function to leverage existing coordination mechanisms between the government and infrastructure owners/operators; and
  • Focus on outcomes-based response through the prioritization of the rapid stabilization of life-saving and life sustaining Lifelines.

The updated NRF will continue to focus on the capabilities necessary to save lives, protect property and the environment, and meet basic human needs during disasters. The NRF will continue to be scalable, flexible and adaptable, using the core capabilities identified in the National Preparedness Goal.

FEMA is hosting a series of one-hour engagement webinars to describe the update and answer participants’ questions. These webinars are geared toward the whole community, including individuals and communities, the private and nonprofit sectors, faith-based organizations, and all governments (state, local, tribal, and territorial, as well as federal agencies).

Advance registration is required and on a first-come, first-served basis. To register, click on your preferred webinar session from the list below.

Webinar 1: Monday, October 15, 4:00 p.m. EDT
Register at: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/nrf-webinar1/event/registration.html

Webinar 2: Thursday, October 18, 12:00 p.m. EDT
Register at: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/nrf-webinar2/event/registration.html

Webinar 3: Wednesday, October 24, 10:00 a.m. EDT
Register at: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/nrf-webinar3/event/registration.html

Webinar 4: Friday, October 26, 3:00 p.m. EDT
Register at: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/nrf-webinar4/event/registration.html