Hiring more firefighters and improving safety are at the forefront in North Jersey where three fire departments have been awarded federal funds to do just that.

The Clifton Fire Department has received $1.35 million to hire firefighters through the Federal Emergency Management Agency's Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER)  program.

Additional funding is going to three North Jersey fire departments through FEMA's Fire Prevention and Safety program.  U.S. Senators Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez made the announcement today.

"As budgets for local first responders are being cut, this federal funding will help put more firefighters on duty in Clifton and help fire departments in Hoboken and Nutley invest in resources to better protect our communities," said Lautenberg, Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security, which funds FEMA.  "Keeping New Jersey families safe is our first priority and I will continue fighting for federal funds to support our firefighters."

"This federal funding will help ensure that fire departments across New Jersey have the resources and personnel they need to respond effectively in an emergency," said Menendez.  "Our firefighters risk their lives every time they answer a call and we are responsible for making sure that they have the necessary training and equipment to carry out their jobs safely.  I will continue to fight to make sure our first responders have the tools they need to protect our families."

Through the SAFER grant, the City of Clifton will be able to hire eight new, full-time firefighters.  An additional $41,000 in federal funds will be distributed as follows:

  • Clifton Fire Department-$22,664
  • Hoboken Fire Department-$1,854
  • Nutley Fire Department-$16,830