Thread: AFG Projects???

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    Default AFG Projects???

    In trying to plan ahead for next year, we are trying to look for projects that were successful with the AFG program for small suburban/rural department.

    This creates two questions:

    1) Do any of you know if there is a website that tells exactly what was purchased with an award? The DHS website has a few select "success stories", but there really isn't a lot of variety there.

    2) If your department has been successful, would you mind sharing what was purchased. Please list the department and maybe a contact person in case we, or anyone else reading these posts, wish to follow up.

    Thanks.

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    In addition to some of the success stories shared on these forums, there are a few sprinkled around other places. I have a few on my web site (www.firegraphics.org) as well as Kurt's (www.chiefgrants.com) and Alana's (www.yourgrantwriter.com).

    Not to give you a wide open answer, but in the 5 years of the program, there have been awards for nearly every eligible project in the AFG. If you're looking for direction for next year, read through the Program Guidance from 2005 a few times, highlight the priorities, and figure out what is common with your current operational deficiencies in your department. We all have some, and if you're not honest with yourself about the shortfalls, you will have a tough time being successful with the program.

    Definitely avoid lumping projects, so if you really need PPE, keep it to that and don't pile on a lot of things. Very few awards cross functional boundaries, like being awarded for PPE and SCBA at the same time. It has happened, but it is more rare than everyone thinks. Multi-OD projects are the minority in awards, single OD projects have a better chance at success.

    Good luck, and don't be afraid to shoot out more questions here or by email. We're all hanging out to learn, and the more questions asked, the more answers appear, the more we all learn, and that's the real name of the game.

    - Brian
    Brian P. Vickers
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    Quote Originally Posted by BC79er
    highlight the priorities, and figure out what is common with your current operational deficiencies in your department. - Brian
    Very true. I think one of the big problems people run into is looking at what someone else got and then trying for the same thing without doing a localized needs analysis. Rather than saying...."oh it looks like a bunch of TIC's were awarded last year, let's try for that"....the way it should work is "we have a definite need for a TIC and it is a grant priority so let's build a project around that".

    Remember, the program is designed to help departments cure deficiencies that are blatent and unsafe.... To build a grant request around "what can we get" as opposed to "what do we need" is putting the cart before the horse.

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    Also, to add to what Brian said, if you can match those deficiencies up with the Program Guidelines, you will then be required to JUSTIFY your request within the narrative. Having a list of items funded does no good alone. There is no 'magic' item that will get you funded. You must be able to make a case for your needs and be able to justify why your department can't get that item (or items) on your own.

    Also, think bang for your buck. (Cost/Benefit portion of the narrative). They want to know how many people or departments will be rewarded from you receiving this grant. This would be a good place to mention any mutual aid departments that will benefit or any additional citizens or groups that will benefit.

    But, to recap, the justification is what gets alot of folks. You can't just say, we're poor, and can't afford that. We need money. Because, basically everyone could say that. You must present clear cut reasons why you can't fund it on your own and other reasons to justify the award in their eyes (think like a peer panel member!). - I did read a really good article about that somewhere recently...hmmm, Brian? LOL...
    Alana Tomlin Denton
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    As a matter of fact I read 1 or 3 good ones around here somewhere myself. What a coincidence...

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    Quote Originally Posted by ameryfd
    To build a grant request around "what can we get" as opposed to "what do we need" is putting the cart before the horse.
    Trouble is, what we really need is a vehicle, and everyone will tell you that the chances of being awarded are somewhere between slim and none. So, I guess we're left to ask for what we can get rather than what we need.

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    Chances are 1 in 10 for trucks, and it might be even slimmer next year with the reduction in available funding for 2006. I'll be 3 hours from you in mid-February Chief. Not right around the corner, but closer than TX. Check my site for details. Or shoot an email over, I can throw a few options out for you.

    - Brian.

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    Chief, not to give you a false hope, but someone has to win the vehicles. If that is your only need, and your guys are safe every single time they run into a building then there's no sense in wasting an app. just applying for something that you don't really need.

    The bottom line on trucks, if you go into it with your eyes wide open, not expecting the moon, since it is a gamble, but have taken care of the other areas of your department (SCBA, PPE, etc) then go for it. Brian will steer you in the right direction, since he's the truck 'guru'. Good Luck!
    Alana Tomlin Denton
    Freelance Grant Writer/Consultant

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    Chief310,

    As you are well aware of, the competition for apparatus is tough and only will become tougher as funding for the AFG drops. It's not an impossible task. This year we recieved a grant in Round 2 for a new brush truck.

    If this is your most pressing need, you have to go for it. You need to start writing your narrative now. With everything else being equal, that narrative will have to be one of the most compelling to recieve funding next year. An early start, means that you won't miss any points, are not rushing and gives you plenty of time to review it and make changes as new info comes in etc.

    Good luck.

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    I have a question for 2006 grant. We have a brush truck, 1974 AM General military 5-ton water tanker. We put a 95 GPM pump on it that came off a truck we took out of service. The pump is 30 years old and beginning to smoke and give trouble. We run about 100 calls a year with 1/2 being grass and brush fires. I was thinking about replacing the pump under next years grant application. Looked at at 500 GPM gasoline powered pump about $14,000. Can anyone tell me if they think this would be a high priority item. This truck also runs on barn and Chicken house fires where it is hard to get an engine into. Another item on our list is a PTO Generator and light tower for our Squad. It responds to calls with 3 other departments as well as being mutual aid for the entire county. It now has a 10,000 watt gasoline powered generator and 4-1500 watt telescoping lights and an 8 bottle 5000 psi cascade system on it. Is this something I can lump together and keep a good priority rating.

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    As my dad always says, smoke must power everything because as soon as smoke comes out of something it doesn't work anymore.

    I know several folks that have gotten portable pumps for drafting sites and other water supply issues, I personally don't see any drop in priority to get on to replace an old unit. Your call volume for brush/grass fires is there, underscoring the need for a reliable pump.

    I'm on the fence about the generator & light tower for the squad without knowing more details. Depending on the age of the unit, there will be the pessimistic question of why wasn't it a larger gas/PTO genset to begin with. Same with the tower vs telescoping lights. The difference in financing wouldn't have changed too much in the quick math I just did in my head. But if those 100 calls include the M/A runs, I'm not thinking it's high enough on the food chain. It depends on the total cost. While the light tower is quicker and easier to deploy, depending on what type it is will answer the usability question. If you're adding to the existing lights, then I can see a decent argument. Replacing, no. We have light towers on the heavy rescue and the rescue-pumper. Since you can basically only light one direction (HDR tower can twist 2 lights each way, details), you'll still need the telescoping lights for other areas.

    It's better than trying to buy a whole new truck, that's for sure. I'd say for under $30-40K, that's a pretty good request if properly justified.

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    Best I can remember the PTO generator was about $15,000, the gasoline generator was about $3,000 for 10kw, could not afford the difference when we refurbished the truck. Can't remember the cost of the light tower but I got the 4 1500 watt lights for about $250 each and we purchased 2 and then added 2 later. 10kw generator pushing the limit with all 4 telescoping lights plus tripod lights and recip saw running on some MVAs that we have worked.
    I asked about the generator because I don't want to bring down the priority on the pump with the other items. They are not as high a priority for us but would be a nice addition to the truck. We are thinking along this line because we were funded for new SCBA, Turnouts, hose, nozzles, and Cascade compressor in 2003. Turned down in 2004 and 2005 for tanker truck, not really much else we need.

    Thanks for the help BC

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    Ah, purchased at refurb makes a difference, versus spec'ing new. Understandable choice in those conditions. Generator upgrade without the light tower has a better chance than with IMHO. Light tower would be a hard sell with existing lighting.

    Interesting about the tanker denial. With review or without review? Lots of competition so with 5 out of 7 vehicle apps being denied without review, 1 denied after, and 1 awarded, it is a long shot. Personally I'd go after the other stuff first. Something beats nothing, and the cost-benefit to your operations is about the same if the current tanker isn't falling apart.

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    Tanker denied without review both times. First time tried pumper/tanker, but we had a 2000 model pumper. Second time tried for tanker, had a very good narrative but did not make it to peer review so narrative did not count either time. Our tanker truck is a 1983 FMC/GMC but it only has 13,000 miles on it. It needs some major repairs, tank leaking, rear springs shot. We will probably look for another used one or try to have one built on a used chassis.

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    If the repairs aren't ridiculous, you're rural with less than 10K residents, and handle mostly grass/brush fires, check the Rural Fire Assistance Program, or the Volunteer Fire Assistance, both through the US Dept of Interior/Forestry. Your state forester is the contact. RFAP requires 10% match, max award of $20K. VFA is 50% match, max award $5K. Both require a previously established agreement with the state forester for response, or something like that. Might be enough dough to repair the truck.

    Funding emergency services is all about options.

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    Folks there is a real good general rule about going after trucks and that is quite simple. In the PG it says they have to be older and have higher mileage to recieve priority. Now notice that is a two pronged standard, you have to meet both. Equate that to mean:

    Old = 25+ years of age
    Higher mileage= 100k

    In my 11 for 12 succesful apps for vehicles this year, all 11 fit both catagories, as did all 6 of the vehicles I got awarded in 2004. That formula is pretty good guidelines advice.
    Kurt Bradley
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    Quote Originally Posted by BC79er
    If the repairs aren't ridiculous, you're rural with less than 10K residents, and handle mostly grass/brush fires, check the Rural Fire Assistance Program, or the Volunteer Fire Assistance, both through the US Dept of Interior/Forestry. Your state forester is the contact. RFAP requires 10% match, max award of $20K. VFA is 50% match, max award $5K. Both require a previously established agreement with the state forester for response, or something like that. Might be enough dough to repair the truck.

    Funding emergency services is all about options.
    VFA is a good choice for replacing the pump on that 5T. That is how we purchased the CET Honda for our wildland truck. At least in Iowa very easy app. and easy $.

    DOD also has fairly easy pickup on 350gpm @275ft head will pump 500gpm @ open discharge. Most are V4 Wisconsin but newer are 3cyl Duetz Diesel. We have 2x of the older Wisc that rcvd about a year ago with less than 20hr each. Just ran one for 3 days straight to pump down a pond in prep for dry hydrant install. Not as compact as a little Honda unit but price is cost of transport. I think could make into a very usable pump for your 5T.

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