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CNY fire departments get federal funding to hire additional firefighters, buy equipment

By Eric Reinhardt (


Syracuse Fire Chief Michael Monds on Monday announced the federal grants awarded to the department that will allow it to hire 12 additional firefighters and purchase thermal-imaging cameras. The Syracuse department is among 11 in Central New York awarded federal funding. (Eric Reinhardt / CNYBJ)

Some Central New York fire departments will use federal funding to hire additional local firefighters and to pay for firefighter safety training and equipment.

The 11 departments will use a total of more than $5.6 million from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the office of U.S. Representative John Katko (R–Camillus) announced Monday.

The funding recipients include fire departments in Syracuse, Auburn, Fulton, and Fayetteville; South Onondaga Fire Department Inc. in Nedrow; Owasco Fire Department in Auburn; Lakeside Fire District in Syracuse; Springport Fire District in Union Springs; the Scriba Volunteer Firefighter Corporation in Oswego; the Volney Volunteer Fire Corp. in Fulton; and the Fleming Volunteer Fire Department in Auburn, per Katko’s office.

The funds are available through the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant program and the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program (AFG), programs administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) within DHS.

Funds from the SAFER program will allow the City of Syracuse to hire 12 additional firefighters and the City of Auburn to add five more firefighters.

Funds from the AFG program can be used by fire departments for professional training, wellness and fitness programs, personal protective equipment, modifications to facilities, and supplies that support firefighting.

“This particular [FEMA] grant is the largest grant in our history,” Michael Monds, chief of the Syracuse Fire Department, said in referencing a more than $3.2 million award for hiring firefighters.

Monds spoke Monday at the department’s Station 1 at 900 South State St.

SAFER grants

  • City of Syracuse: $3,237,125
  • City of Auburn: $1,266,480

AFG grants

  • City of Syracuse: $73,636
  • City of Auburn: $246,182
  • Village of Fayetteville: $488,664
  • Lakeside Fire District: $61,902
  • Springport Fire District: $41,642
  • Owasco Fire Department: $35,142
  • South Onondaga Fire Department Inc.: $34,933
  • City of Fulton: $29,658
  • Scriba Volunteer Fire Corporation: $24,571
  • Volney Volunteer Fire Corp.: $105,700
  • Fleming Volunteer Fire Dept.: $11,428





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