1. #1
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    Default Rescue Truck Grant for 06'

    Does anyone have any success stories for a rescue truck in the Fire Act Grant program. I am looking for any narratives or advice from a successful applicant or the 'gurus'. I have been awarded the past 2 years for radios and new SCBA's respectively so I know my chances are not the best for this category. Our current rescue is a 1980 E-One and has seen much better days. Any help would be apprecciated.

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    If your classification is rural or suburban don't waste your time. A rescue truck is a priority 2 vehicle for both classifications. It will not be funded. There are too many apps for priority 1's. If you're an urban classification then it's a priority 1, but at the bottom of that list. It would be an extremely long shot with others looking for pumps, aerials etc.

    This is based on the 2005 PG. Maybe the priority will change for 2006, but I wouldn't count on it.

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    What he said. Rescues went from P1 to P2 for Urban in 2005, but I don't envision that happening for Suburban, definitely not Rural with the amount of P1 apps going in every year.

    The last Heavy Rescue awarded that I have found was ours in 2002. It was a P2 then, there just weren't as many Vehicle Apps that year. I couldn't do it again for us if I tried, too much competition.

    My narrative is on my web site, www.firegraphics.org, if you want to check it out. Community VFD Heavy Rescue under the Vehicle samples pages. It will be a long shot if you attempt it, so if you do make sure you don't leave any chips on the table in the narrative.

    Good luck, and drop a line if you have any questions.

    - Brian

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    We are classified as rural and I do understand the odds are slim at best of receiving an award. Do you think it would get a more preferable review if we just rechassis it? Also, Brian, have you heard when the 2006 guidance is due out?

    Thanks

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    It will probably be out sometime in February. They have a meeting with all of the FPSs to go over it, and it's usually in January sometime, so I would expect to see it around the middle of February at the latest. Hopefully earlier.

    Even as a rechassis, it's still classified as a Priority 2 project since it's purpose isn't changing. It's still a rescue. It's more cost-beneficial as a rechassis than a whole new truck, but the odds are still way behind because it is a P2. Remember, that automatically scores you behind every P1 in the pot, so considering that number, I can't see where a P2 has even made it to PR in the past couple of years. Creativity will have to be on the Hi setting.

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    If body is good enough that you would consider a rechassis. How about a rechassis with a change of mission? New chassis has a 750gpm+ (ISO) pump and a 1250gal+ tank. Then you have a P1 Rural tanker pumper (and oh by the way is still a rescue).

    Multi use is good mojo and in concept this plan holds the cost down vs a 100% new truck.

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    while I agree with your thoughts; truth of the matter is there isnt enough money to go around, and as a result if it aint a P1 and you dont own onr yet; or the one you have was purchased just after Noah gave up animal rescue....it aint gonna get funded.

    That being said, I gotta believe that DHS has to see how many people need apparatus, and are working to shore up funds..

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    If you mean shore up as in put more money to it, don't see it happening for some time if it ever does. The 25% max for vehicles was written into the original law for the program, so that can't change until after 2011. The only way it goes up is if they put more money into the program.

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    The problem I have going for a pumper rescue is that my 2 pumpers are currently a 99' LaFrance / 4Guys and an 89 American Eagle. I figured that these 2 trucks were too new to replace. When I went to the program put on by DHS last year, the rep said that if your truck does not have the old style round headlights, don't bother trying.

    Or are you suggesting that we replace our rescue with a small pumper rescue?? That's an interesting thought. Do you think that would fly??

    Bueler, Bueler
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    Yes, it probably would be a waste of an app to try for a pumper (rescue-pumper) with what you have now. A smaller quick attack would really drop the amount of stuff you could carry, but it would be a P1. Just depends on whether or not that would fit your needs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BC79er
    If you mean shore up as in put more money to it, don't see it happening for some time if it ever does. The 25% max for vehicles was written into the original law for the program, so that can't change until after 2011. The only way it goes up is if they put more money into the program.
    As I recall your stats indicte many depts have not "won" but I agree that more $ need to go into vehicles vs equipment. My opinion is that a large % of those depts that are going to apply/will be successful have already won and their "equipment" issues fairly well inhand. Not true in vehicles. The same guys (+ hilary) that passed the original legislation could change the formula for distribution by amending the original legislation. Perhaps to 50/50. And organized lobby campaign from the fire business would be require. Personally I think such a campaign is well warranted. Perhaps with a goal of 2007 program. Write/call your congresscritters.

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    Actually, the exact opposite is true. From the number of departments I've come in contact with over the past few months that have never applied, applied once, and haven't even heard of the programs that need good PPE and SCBA. That far outweighs new trucks to me. Doesn't mean I don't think that new trucks aren't needed. But go back to the reason the program came about in the first place: the American Fire Service said PPE and SCBA were top priorities, and vehicles were important but not as much. There is a reason vehicles are capped at 25%, and that's because they are large items. It's a slippery slope to argue the question of who deserves the money more: 5 departments for PPE, or 1 truck? 'tis quite the balancing act.

    More money needs to go into the program period. I think we need to concentrate on that before we try and rearrange the program's rules. Especially since we can't even get them to agree it needs more money, shifting around what does go into it will cause more issues to be brought up, and then we have no program. The current legislation goes away in 2011, so let's aim to have everyone on board to renew it with modifications by then. Prove that nearly everyone has the equipment they need, now it's time for trucks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BC79er
    Actually, the exact opposite is true. From the number of departments I've come in contact with over the past few months that have never applied, applied once, and haven't even heard of the programs that need good PPE and SCBA. That far outweighs new trucks to me. Doesn't mean I don't think that new trucks aren't needed. But go back to the reason the program came about in the first place: the American Fire Service said PPE and SCBA were top priorities, and vehicles were important but not as much. There is a reason vehicles are capped at 25%, and that's because they are large items. It's a slippery slope to argue the question of who deserves the money more: 5 departments for PPE, or 1 truck? 'tis quite the balancing act.

    More money needs to go into the program period. I think we need to concentrate on that before we try and rearrange the program's rules. Especially since we can't even get them to agree it needs more money, shifting around what does go into it will cause more issues to be brought up, and then we have no program. The current legislation goes away in 2011, so let's aim to have everyone on board to renew it with modifications by then. Prove that nearly everyone has the equipment they need, now it's time for trucks.
    I have to agree wholeheartedly 100% with Brian. Every week I run across a FD or two that has never applied, and is running calls in 15 yr old ragged out gear, be it TO or SCBA. They had no idea it was for them, no computer at station, aren't going to national conferences and had just no idea. Until that changes, I too believe that the safety of an entire FD is a little more viable of a project than 1/4 or 1/8 the cost of a truck.

    Now, be that as it may, I'm not knocking the FDs that have a legitimate need for going for apparatus. If their guys are safe every time the truck rolls (they have relatively up to date SCBA and PPE), and they are in need of replacing a 30+ yr old apparatus, then go for it. What I have always had a problem with, is the FD that applies for the truck year after year, while the guys gear gets worse and worse, and they keep getting DJ'd.

    Anyway, just my two...YMMV. But, we do need to encourage them to continue to fund the grant programs. It has and will continue to save lives and impact the fire service on a daily basis.
    Alana Tomlin Denton
    Freelance Grant Writer/Consultant

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    The subtle message being sent by DHS here folks is that they do not want to fund what they consider to be capital investments for cities and communities. They want the communities to fund these themselves.

    When volunteerism waned in the late 80's and early 90's something like 16000 VFDs shuttered their doors, sold their apparatus and sold the firehouses. Those fire stations and trucks had been bought with Uncle Sam's money and somebody walked off with the profits, a mistake Uncle Sam is unlikely to allow to be repeated.

    The same can be said of all programs currently; just look at them. You have one program for getting a station house built ( USDA), SAFER is a pittance for hiring and the COPS grant for law enforcment hasn't allowed a new Cop to be hired in over 4 years and vehicles for cops and fire departments are getting few and far between. AFG is only 25% of the money to vehicles.


    The message is there; your communities need to be funding manpower, vehicles and buildings if they think they need a department.


    Now don't kill the messenger here; just my take on the situation.
    Last edited by ktb9780; 01-13-2006 at 02:23 PM.
    Kurt Bradley
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    State laws/regulation, at least in Iowa, do not allow cities to print currency (arbitrarily raise tax rates) in order to increase spending, for anything. Including new fire trucks. Legally capped tax collections/budget of $12k/yr does not purchase a new truck. Thus the "need" for fire grant vehicles. In fact in rural communities tax collections go down each year due to tax limitation formulas that restrict the taxing ability of communities. Not uncommon across the nation.

    The city dwellers/rats in Iowa and nationwide nillywilly bid housing prices thru the roof but they don't want to pay the pervailing tax rate x their new homes price/"value". So they force a roll back of tax rates which impacts every community, including those of us in the cheap seats. We end up with a REDUCTION in the tax collections/budget So no new fire trucks, that green stuff doesn't grow on trees. Sorry the way the world works. Just "increase spending" is the Pollyanna/living in a vacumn answer.

    Grant apps for equipment. What I've seen depts are: 1.) can write & got grant/solved problem. 2.) can't write/won't get off butt to get help so have not received a grant or 3.) would prefer to sit on butt whinning about what they don't have, have not submitted a grant and, surprise, have not received a grant.

    Not a snowballs chance in hell of more $ flowing into the program. If anything the union pressure will divert additional $ into SAFER.

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    Hopefully this doesn't come out wrong, but the tax caps are at the local level, so your local officials are keeping the funding down. A grant won't fix that problem. At $12K a year, how can someone afford PM on the truck. Or replacing parts if there's (God forbid) a wreck, or some issue that isn't warrantable and the FD must fix it. The ability to maintain the equipment after it's in use is the local issue also. Hence the reason that many grant apps mentioning that the PPE is shot because they have no way to take care of it, but they still aren't asking for the washer to do it with. So there is no way to maintain the PPE, and any new PPE will end up looking like the old in no time. No operational improvements made there, no grant.

    Is that all cases? Nope not in the least, but there is no way to design a program to fit every individual's need, hence the reasons for the years of surveys and analysis prior to this program being implemented. Old does not equal obsolete or useless. We have a 1983 FMC open cab pumper as a 2nd out in our Station 2. It's got over 100K miles, rust all over the place, wiring problems that pop up at odd times in oldd places, but I will still drive or ride that truck to a run and it will pump the bejesus out of itself to put water through the hoses as well or better than the newer ones. Unsafe compared to today's trucks? Could be, but new trucks wreck like old trucks because contrary to popular belief, the driver is the problem, not the truck (maintenance issues not counted).

    And what it comes down to is: if the public only wants to give you $12K a year to provide fire protection for themselves, then that's their lives they're playing with. You get what you pay for, and if they want caviar for pork rind pricing, you need to wake them up to the fact that it ain't gonna happen. And if there are a lot of calls, fire fatalities, injuries, and the like, time to get on them even faster since that would mean there isn't time to wait for a grant to buy that new truck/TIC/SCBA, etc, etc.

    The grant funding is no guaranteed, and will probably never be 10% of what is needed to fix all of our problems, so it will always fall back to local funding to fix our local problems. Never depend on grants for your well being. The occasional icing on the cake yes, but I wouldn't bank on one with my life.

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    Brian,

    While I agree with everything you stated; as well as Kurts insight into program; there still needs to be a bit more give & take with regards to vehicles.
    In our case we are fortunate to have some really nice stuff; yet we have grown, and now find ourselves running a 1972 engine that can not meet the needs of our rapidly growning area.
    We have applied for grants at state level; only to have them frozen(3yrs & counting) and our village has larger captiol improvments(infastructure) so in our quest to replace vehicle there are only a few options, including fire Act.

    I would submit that the honorable rep. from Iowa is correct; we need to lobby to somehow shift the funds and/or at a minimum get some more cash infused into it.
    As an avid C-span viewer: yes I know..... The Political folks love to attach extra funds to all kinds of bills so while not slap a few 100 mill. onto one for those who they claim "are the nations first line of defense" when speaking about attacks on the homefront.

    As I believe Kurt pointed out in an earlier post; the terrorists are lurking in the burbs, not the big city.

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    I agree completely with the location of the bad folks. But don't forget the other bad folks that hang out in the rural areas: meth labs, domestic nuts that want to blow up stuff, and a whole host of others where FD responses are required.

    Other than needing more dough in the program, it's hard for me at this point to advocate shifting priorities on that scale. As I mentioned, equipment needs are still pretty high. After all, mention improvements and they'll throw a committee at it to study the recommendations, and then nothing will ever get done. Either that or they'll advocate commercial chassis only to keep each truck cost down. Or even worse, dictate trucks by classification, so rural can only pick 4 door commercial or something stupid like that. Trust me, I've heard that and other dumb ideas from people in positions to make that happen, but luckily it hasn't happened. Or they could do like CEDAP and create a list to pick from. Then you more or less end up with trucks that don't really fit needs. They're not going to put many configurations there to save funds, and odds are they'll leave out some of the great options like CAFS, light towers, etc, etc. And on top of that, it will all cost more administrative money, so they'll up the % that they allow for that from 5% to 15-20%, just to make sure they'd have enough. Leaves even less for awards again. Lucky for us they have been averaging about 2-3% for admin costs, so the grants folks are working more efficiently than they themselves expected.

    Plus they'll never change anything without conducting the same type of research (read as many years of time investment) like they did in the mid to late 90s to create the program in the first place. It would take at least 2 years to create the surveys, send them, wait for results, compile them, make recommendations, then another 1-2 to even get the program re-tooled. In the meantime, no money for us. Just like the grant apps we design, we need to hit the big points before the details, and more money is the biggest one there is.

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    Just a rumor but a little birdie told me that rescue trucks will be priority one status this year! We will see in a few weeks when program guidance is released. Keep your fingers crossed.
    Kurt Bradley
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    Default 06 rescue truck

    another birdie - must be of the same species - has told me to concentrate on re-doing my 05 application that was rejected for a rescue truck....

    i am a frim believer in the theory that a lot of little separate things may mean absolutley nothing - but if they start coming together, then there may be some truth.


    KB - I'll treat both birdies to a round of feed and seed if this is true.

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    We might also see the first round of Fire Prevention Awards announced this week as well. It is my understanding also that the PPT DHS wrokshop presentatation for AFG should be up by next week, as soon as they get done in Atlanta this week.
    Kurt Bradley
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    Quote Originally Posted by ktb9780
    We might also see the first round of Fire Prevention Awards announced this week as well. It is my understanding also that the PPT DHS wrokshop presentatation for AFG should be up by next week, as soon as they get done in Atlanta this week.
    Which leads to a question on seminars...I can drive 2+ hours to one on January 28 over in Illinois or wait until Feb 21 and drive 30 minutes to the closest one. Same regional specialist. I would expect the PG to be issued somewhere in between. Will the presentation likely be the same in both sessions? Will the extra three weeks lead time be better than waiting until after the PG is published?

    Geez...in the process of asking the question i find the answer--go to Illinois for info on 1-28, study the PG when published, and then go to South Bend on 2-21 to clarify any questions. Is it a plan??

    Earl

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greenacres2
    Which leads to a question on seminars...

    Geez...in the process of asking the question i find the answer--go to Illinois for info on 1-28, study the PG when published, and then go to South Bend on 2-21 to clarify any questions. Is it a plan??

    Earl
    Earl, I have hit two in one year before...so go for it. And yes, it will change a little once the PGs come out. Maybe not the slides, but what they say and can disclose will. Also how they answer your questions and the other questions that come up will be better, in my opinion. If it's not but 30 mins, I say nothing lost. -Alana

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    Earl,

    I think I'm going to do something similar here. Go to the workshop in IL that is 30 min away and then mid-Feb go to one in IN that is about an hour away. It will be the same program specialist at both sites but I'm interested to see if or what the difference is.

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    I would kinda hope for it being the same thing in both sessions, since the PPT presentation is written by one or two of the FPSs. Everyone else is highly discouraged from making any changes just for the reason of consistency.

    But in each session, different questions will arise from the audience. If you have the time, I'd hit as many as you can. The only way you know you won't learn something is if you don't show up. That's my motto. Reminds me, I need to check back about the ones around here. Might have to have my dept host one if there aren't any close.

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