1. #1
    MembersZone Subscriber
    TLFD40's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2000
    Upstate New York

    Thumbs down FEMA War with the village Politicians

    I'm Going to be short and to the point. We (the volunteers) were awarded the FEMA money for a new truck, the village is putting up the matching funds. We get the specs done, now they are demanding certain parts of the specs be changed ie; cannot be specific on type of pump and chassis etc... they even went as far as saying it has to be made in the US (Can't do that one, NY Supreme Court ruled against a "made in America requirement on bids". We think there is outside influence but can't prove it. ANY SUGGESTIONS? I'm afraid of loosing the money, do we go to the press, do i call our Congressman for some type of intervention? Anybody else run into a similar problem and what was the outcome. Would anybody that was awarded a FEMA grant for a truck be willing to fax a copy of the specs or know where i can get copies of specs? I really need some help on this one brothers, i'm not letting them screw this up for the volunteers.

  2. #2
    FH Mag/.com Contributor

    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Cypress, TX


    If you put minimum specs of the truck you spec'd in your application to DHS, you must have those specs in your bid or you would be in violation of the laws concerning the application. I.E. you didn't buy what you applied for.

    So if you put in the app that you wanted a 1500gpm pump and 750 gallon tank, CAFS, light tower, etc, etc, they must be part of the vehicle you purchase since it is easily argued that mentioning one or more of those items is what scored you higher and got you the award.

    Besides the fact that you have to put in your bid spec minimum pump size, chassis seating capacity, engine/tranny minimums, plus tank, pump, etc, etc.

    Trojan is right, to be compliant you only have to solicit bids, which means that you don't need to get anything back. I emailed our spec for the heavy rescue we got in 2002 to 6 manufacturers, and got answers back from two. Of course we went through HGAC so we didn't need to solicite bids since the HGAC listing is all pre-bid.

    Anywho, your village politicians can't interfere with the process even if they are cutting the check. I doubt they'll want to get in a PR war and have the public find out. The fire department knows what kind of truck to build and purchase, so the politicians might do well to lay off even if they are cutting the check. Once the townspeople find out that they're trying to bogart a couple hundred thousand dollars over something they know nothing about, I think the public will have their .02 to put in, and back the politicians down.

    Any other developments/questions/needs, drop me an email. I've fought city halls 3 times already over grant issues similar to your situation. I'm happily undefeated.

  3. #3
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Waterboro, Maine


    We got into a small issue with one of the towns that support us, it wasn't a grant, but same idea as what you've got going on. We ended up calling the state Legislative Law Library, who faxed us the pages of law that cover just how things are supposed to go. Our next step was going to be a small article in the paper, but was not neccessary. Once we showed we new enough about the law to be dangerous, they came back down to eye level. Life is good now.
    Good luck.

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