In recognition of the economic hardships facing local jurisdictions and fire departments across the country as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad F. Wolf has waived the cost share, position cost limit, supplanting, and minimum budget requirements for FY19 SAFER grant applicants. For more information, see Information Bulletin 450 which can be found here. In addition, the application period is being extended to May 27, 2020 at 5 p.m. ET.
Please note: Funds under the FY 2019 SAFER Hiring of Firefighters Activity must be used to hire new, additional firefighters, and the costs to hire those firefighters must be at the usual annual costs of a first-year (i.e., entry-level) firefighter. This requirement has not been waived.
Additionally, the waiver of the requirements identified above does not apply to the FY 2019 Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program (AFG) or to the FY 2020 Assistance to Firefighters Grant – COVID-19 Supplemental Program (AFG-S).
In consideration of the economic impact of the pandemic, Acting Secretary Wolf has also authorized waivers for certain provisions of the FY 2020 SAFER Grant Program. DHS/FEMA will provide more details on the FY 2020 changes soon.
Applicants no longer need to request an economic hardship waiver within the FY 2019 online application. If you have already submitted your FY 2019 application, no further action is needed at this time. The waiver of these provisions and the adjustments to the requested amount will be handled by the SAFER Program Office during their technical review of applications.
If you have not yet submitted your application, please note that the applications will continue to show the cost share/position cost limit. However, as stated above, there is nothing additional that applicants need to do regarding these provisions. The adjustment will be made by the SAFER Program Office.
The FEMA Grant Outcomes (GO) system automatically records proof of timely submission and the system generates an electronic date/time stamp when FEMA GO successfully receives the application. The individual with the Authorized Organization Representative (AOR) role that submitted the application will also receive the official date/time stamp and a FEMA GO tracking number in an email serving as proof of their timely submission. Applications received by FEMA GO after the extended application submission deadline will be deemed as late and typically will not be considered for funding.
DHS/FEMA will not review applications that are received after the extended deadline or consider them for funding except in cases where a technical problem outside of the applicant’s control prevented submission of the application by the deadline.