DCA Opens Application Period for the American Rescue Plan Firefighter Grant Program

he New Jersey Department of Community Affairs’ (DCA) Division of Local Government Services (DLGS) and Division of Fire Safety (DFS) today announced that the application period is open for the American Rescue Plan Firefighter Grant Program, which will help local and regional fire departments in New Jersey provide first responders with proper protective, cleaning, and sanitization equipment. The application announcement comes on the heels of Governor Murphy appropriating $10 million from the American Rescue Plan State Fiscal Recovery Funds last month to support the purchase of firefighter equipment during this time of heightened community need.

"This grant program addresses a need that firefighters statewide have had throughout the pandemic. As our frontline defense against fires, we owe them this funding to increase their safety,” said Lt. Governor Sheila Oliver, who serves as Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs. “We are particularly focused on providing these grants to fire departments that are currently lacking the resources they need to serve their communities, especially those that have been under substantial stress during the pandemic."


Grants of up to $75,000 will be administered by the Division of Local Government Services, and the program will be funded by $10 million in American Rescue Plan State Fiscal Recovery Funds. Grant awards will prioritize volunteer fire departments, as well as departments in communities that have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. 


"These firefighter grants are going to enable fire departments to better protect their employees not just against fires and other hazards during emergency responses, but against deadly pathogens as well,” said DFS Director and State Fire Marshal Richard Mikutsky.“Since the pandemic, firefighters have faced additional health and safety risks and a growing need for an array of high-quality equipment, including personal protective equipment (PPE) and toxic-chemical-free clothing ensembles, helmets, gloves, and boots."


"We’re looking forward to helping New Jersey’s dedicated fire service through this grant program and stand ready to assist them as they apply for funds,” said DLGS Director Jacquelyn Suárez. “The grant review process is going to prioritize departments with a demonstrated need or that evidence a heightened systemic strain due to COVID-19, and those with existing underserved populations in the community."


All applications must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. EST on August 13, 2022, through the NJDCA SAGE Portal, which can be accessed here:https://dcasage.intelligrants.com/portal.asp. 


For municipal and volunteer fire departments, applications are to be submitted through their municipality.


For regional or independent fire departments, the stand-alone agency or fire district must be registered in SAGE and set up an “Agency Profile.” The SAGE Agency User Manual can be located at: https://www.nj.gov/dca/dlgs/programs/arpffg.shtml. 


To view the full program guidelines online, visit:https://www.nj.gov/dca/dlgs/programs/arpffg.shtml. 


Applicants may contact Laurie Ann Doyle in DLGS at (609) 292-4132 to discuss program and project needs up to submission of the application. Questions may also be submitted via e-mail to [email protected].

New Jersey Firefighters Mutual Benevolent Association