🚒 NJ firefighters to get millions for new equipment
🚒 American Rescue Plan money will be given out as grants
🚒 Gov. Phil Murphy says we must protect our protectors

An additional $10 million for firefighters is included in the proposed New Jersey State budget for fiscal year 2024.

During a visit to a Fire Company in Paramus on Tuesday Gov. Phil Murphy said American Rescue Plan money will provide funding to local and regional fire companies across the Garden State to ensure firefighters have the equipment they need to do their job safely.

“Protecting the residents of New Jersey is probably my most sacred duty as governor, and a critical part of that means protecting our protectors,” he said.

The American Rescue Plan Firefighter Grant program provides money for “everything from PPE to advanced cleaning equipment, protective clothing to special breathing apparatus.”

Murphy said firefighting companies across the Garden State will also be able to use the grant money for particulate blocking hoods.

Recycling Plant Fire

It's life-saving equipment

“This is literal life-saving equipment, these hoods help keep out the nasty carcinogens and other contaminants in the air when they’re fighting fires.”

“Professional Firefighters Association of New Jersey firefighters across this state run into harms way every day,” said Steve McConlogue, president of the Professional Firefighters Association of New Jersey, “this funding allows departments to purchase the equipment we need to effectively do our jobs.”

New Jersey State Firefighter’s Association President Robert Ordway said “as first responders, our 54,000 members are committed to protecting New Jersey’s residents and property when called upon. We stand proudly with the Governor and his team as he protects the health and safety of our firefighters.”

Funds to be prioritized

Getty Stock / ThinkStock

The governor said volunteer firefighting departments and departments hit hardest during the pandemic will be prioritized for grant money, “so firefighters can feel confident knowing they are fully equipped to be as safe as possible when heading into the unknown.”

During last year’s round of funding, the Department of Community Affairs’ Division of Local Government Services awarded a total of 293 fire departments up to $56,000 to cover the costs of much needed equipment, including:

• protective clothing (turnout clothing ensembles, pants, garments, helmets, hoods, gloves, footwear, etc.)
• cleaning and advanced cleaning equipment
• oxygen equipment
• personal protective equipment (PPE)
• other fire/virus protection equipment as determined to be appropriate by the Division of Local Government Services

The funding must be approved by state lawmakers as part of the governor’s proposed spending plan.

David Matthau is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at david.matthau@townsquaremedia.com

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