Thread: Experts Help!

  1. #1
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    Default Experts Help!

    I need some help. We are a fire department that operates within a fire district. The district is the tax-collecting entity that has an operating budget, pays all of the bills as far as building upkeep, vehicle purchases and maintenence, insurance, etc. The fire department operates within the district and supplies the manpower. When the fire department needs equipment we submit a request to the district. The fire department has no budget of our own and generally on an annual basis we recieve $5,000 or less from the district for equipment. We raise funds through dinners, grants, etc.

    My question is this. I am writing a grant proposal for the fire department for SCBA and PPE. In past grant proposals I have imput the district's information in budget details since the department has no budget to speak of. Am I doing this correctly or am i doing myself a disservice? If I change this now will I be flagged for having radically different information in my proposal from what I imput last year? I called the AFG help-desk and asked this question and the person I spoke with clearly had no idea what I was talking about and was of no assistance.

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    What you describe is exactly the situation that I have here in Middlesex, NY. Your neighbors to the south. ;-)

    My suggestion is you continue to go at it use the district numbers. The problem lies in the technically the district is the authority having jurisdiction (they ARE the fire department) and they (the Commissioners of the Fire District) are ultimately responsible to the public (taxpayers) for fire protection. This, as you said, includes the fire equipment, apparatus, building, ect.

    Another big thing is to be sure you have the permission of the Commissioners of the Fire District before you submit any grants as they will be ultimately responsible for the 5 (or whatever) percent cost match. Also the Fire District will ultimately have to maintain any new SCBA acquired so be sure they are on board.

    Another key when filling in the AFG Grant application is that is asks for "operating budget." This is not necessarily the entire fire district budget. If your fire district has structured capital reserve funds for equipment or buildings or makes bond payments on trucks or buildings you can exclude that from the number you use for "operating budget."


    The help section's exact wording is:

    "The operating portion of a budget is that portion dedicated to expenditures for day-to-day activities. Examples are as follows: maintenance of apparatus, equipment, and facilities; utility costs; purchasing expendable items, etc. Expenses for large capital items (apparatus, CAD systems) are excluded from the operating budget."

    "The budget numbers to be entered are for a typical 1-year budget. Applicants may look at the last 3 years and give an average if the budgets for those years were typical."

    We just were awarding new SCBA in the 15th round of AFG FY2007 for our fire district - the hardest part was convincing the District Commissioner's that this would be a good thing.

    We ended up getting 12 new MSA SCBA, 20 spare cylinders, individual facepieces, a RIT pack and a cascade / fill station for a local budget cost of about $10,000.00. The value of the equipment is about $94,000.00. Not a Bad Deal!

    Expecting delivery in early May.

    Any other questions - dharrington@middlesexny.org

    Dave
    Middlesex Fire
    http://www.middlesexfire.org
    Last edited by hdavid66; 03-06-2008 at 03:12 AM.

  3. #3
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    Default Thanks

    David - I was working with the same issues - came to the same conclusion as you did.... so it is a big help.

    I am working on PPE this year but next year (if we are successful with this grant) we are looking for some scba and a fill station.

    How are you NY guys going to handle the training issue this year? I think in the narrative that I am going to write that NYS provides the training to the county which provides it to us basically at no cost (other than the highly specialized training). As a result we do not need money to budget for training as we will take advantage of the training offered by the state.

    Sean Kelleher
    Quaker Springs FD - Saratoga NY

  4. #4
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    Default NYS Training

    How are you NY guys going to handle the training issue this year? I think in the narrative that I am going to write that NYS provides the training to the county which provides it to us basically at no cost (other than the highly specialized training). As a result we do not need money to budget for training as we will take advantage of the training offered by the state.
    I think that is the best way to go about it. I put something to the effect of:

    As of the time of this application, 93% of the active firefighters of the Fire District are trained to a New York State standard equivalent to the NFPA 1001 standard. The remaining 7% are new members that have not yet had an opportunity to attend training. This training is regularly scheduled by the state at the county level and will be offered soon. We will not be requesting funding for this function.
    For all the problems NY has - we are very fortunate in NY to have a solid firefighter training program that costs basicly nothing.

    Dave
    Dave
    Middlesex Hose Co.
    Middlesex NY

    dharrington@middlesexny.org

    http://www.middlesexfire.org

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    We have the issue of the fact that the state ran out of training money and the 4 guys we needed to send to firefighter one can't go until the next budget year

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