If your department is like thousands of others around the country, you are wondering when you are going to hear about your AFG application. We’ve been hearing about fire departments receiving some eye-widening emails, and here’s what our own Senior Grant Consultant has to say about the instructions in the email:
“The following emails are starting to arrive in people’s mailboxes,” says Kurt. “I do not believe it is an indication of an award to anyone. However, the only people receiving them are those with 2018 AFG applications in the system right now. If you have any application submitted and under consideration at this time, you need to do this right now!”
If you’ve received an email like the one below, follow these instructions:
System for Award Management (SAM) Reminders
This is a reminder that per the FY 2018 Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Programs (AFGP) all grant applicants must have been registered in System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting their online application.
All Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG), Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER), and Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S) grant applicants must maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times while they have an application pending or have an active federal award.
FEMA may not make an award to an applicant if they do not have an active SAM.gov registration with current information.
Therefore, we recommended that all applicants check their SAM.gov account to make sure it is ACTIVE. 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:
Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS)
Employer Identification 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 SAM.gov is FREE
SAM.gov registrations are only active for one year and registration must be renewed and revalidated at least every 12 months from the date previously registered to avoid being INACTIVE.
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:
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!
From coast to coast and in between, 11 First Responder Grants clients have won a combined $1,547,140 in fire grants from the FY 2017 Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) program and the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER). These awards were announced as part of the AFG and SAFER fire grant awards announced during August 31, 2018, through September 14, 2018.
To-date First Responder Grants clients and students have won a combined $6,062,841 in fire grants under FY 2017 AFG, SAFER, and FP&S this year.
AFG, SAFER, and FP&S fire grants are administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
“Whether hundreds of dollars or millions of dollars, these vital fire grant programs can aid your department with equipment, training, and staffing,” says Kurt Bradley, Senior Grants Consultant at First Responder Grants. “By having clear, compelling narratives, and applications that met program requirements, these eleven winners not only have reached the grant winner’s circle, they can now better protect their personnel and their communities.”
About First Responder Grants
Public safety agencies nationwide rely on First Responder Grants for grant writing training, grant consulting, and the latest news and tips and news for writing winning grant applications. Since 1998, our Certified Grants Consultants have helped public safety agencies like yours win over $2,000,000,000 in grant funding. Our grant writing training students learn to write competitive grants that bring home additional funding dollars to your agency, but that’s not all. Students receiving First Responder Grants training in grant writing maintain a documented +80% success rate at winning a grant award after attending our classes—many on their very first application.
Application Period: Mon., Sept. 24, 2018, 8 a.m. EST — Fri., Oct. 26, 5 p.m. EST
$315,000,000 available for Fire Service Organizations
The purpose of the AFG Program is to enhance the safety of the public and firefighters
with respect to fire and fire-related hazards. The program provides direct financial
assistance to eligible fire departments, nonaffiliated emergency medical service (EMS)
organizations, and State Fire Training Academies (SFTA). The funds provide critically
needed resources that equip and train emergency personnel to recognized standards,
enhance operational efficiencies, foster interoperability, and support community
What this grant does for your agency
The AFG Program also addresses the following “Core Capabilities” of the National
Fire Management and Suppression
Environmental Response/Health and Safety
Threats and Hazards Identification
Public Health, Healthcare, and Emergency Medical Services
First Responder Grants Senior Consultant Kurt Bradley has helped fire service organizations nationwide win hundreds of millions of dollars in AFG funds. Here are his tips for 2018 AFG:
Review the NOFO carefully 2-3 times. I cannot emphasize this enough. The #1 reason grants are rejected is failure to read and follow directions.
Read the questions several times. Then answer the questions, being careful to take full credit for the answer you give.
High priority items only. Do not bother going after anything that is marked as medium or low priority. AFG will only fund high priority items, and that high priority is set by AFG, not you.
Requesting funds for turnout gear? If going after turnout gear, you need to be replacing at least 50% of your department’s gear. The gear being replaced also needs to be at least 13-14 years of age to get any priority at all.
Choose your answers carefully. Be careful about your selection for why you are replacing equipment or PPE. Read all choices clearly before selecting. There are new choices this year, so read the NOFO carefully before selecting your answer. The wrong answer can cause your request to be instantly rejected. This was a top reason for grants being rejected by computer last year.
Vehicle acquisitions? Even though only about 100 fire trucks are given away per year, apparatus is AFG’s most requested item. Even if you have the strongest need, trucks are a roll of the dice. AFG only funds about 10-15 trucks over the $500,000 mark per year. Have a plan B in mind to replace trucks. Also, be sure your request is “reasonable” in cost, no bells or whistles.
Check your math. Be sure numbers that you put down in answer boxes add up correctly to totals listed elsewhere. They should also agree with what you are stating in your narratives. Inconsistencies are cause for rejection.
Don’t procrastinate. Get your application done, make sure it’s rock solid, and submit it as soon as possible. Don’t wait till a week before it’s due. Start now: get it composed, proof-read, entered, and submitted.
Structure micro-grants to new funding limits. Micro-grants now have a $50,000 maximum, so make sure your micro-grant is specific and keeps under that limit.
Fire departments operating in any of the 50 states, as well as fire departments in the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or any federally recognized Indian tribe or tribal organization. A fire department is an agency or organization having a formally recognized arrangement with a state, territory, local, or tribal authority (city, county, parish, fire district, township, town, or other governing body) to provide fire suppression to a population within a geographically fixed primary first due response area.
Nonaffiliated EMS organizations
Nonaffiliated EMS organizations operating in any of the 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or any federally recognized Indian tribe or tribal organization. A nonaffiliated EMS organization is an agency or organization that is a public or private nonprofit emergency medical service entity providing medical transport that is not affiliated with a hospital and does not serve a geographic area in which emergency medical services are adequately provided by a fire department.
State Fire Training Academies
A State Fire Training Academy (SFTA) operates in any of the 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Applicants must be designated either by legislation or by a Governor’s declaration as the sole fire service training agency within a state, territory, or the District of Columbia. The designated SFTA shall be the only agency/bureau/division, or entity within that state, territory, or the District of Columbia.
About the FEMA
FEMA’s mission is helping people before, during, and after disasters. More
Grant applications are due no later than Fri., Oct. 26, 5 p.m. EST.
The FY 2018 AFG open application opportunity is right around the corner (September 24 tentative start date) Begin preparing for the FY 2018 open application period by reviewing the available application assistance tools below.
Beginning September 17, 2018, AFGP staff will host two live webinar series to educate organizations on what is new for FY 2018. The Application Workshop webinars will teach attendees about the Assistance to Firefighters Grant program, its mission, which organizations and activities are eligible, and how to apply.
A Fire Program Analyst will provide updates that apply to the FY 2018 application and some help tips in preparing your application. We will also have our Application Walk-thru webinars which gives attendees a section by section view of the application with AFG staff to explain and answer questions.