St. John Valley

FEMA awards Fort Kent Fire Department $125,000 grant

Fort Kent Fire Chief Ed Endee (Don Eno | SJVT/FhF)

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has awarded the Fort Kent Fire Department a more than $119,000 Assistance to Firefighters Grant to buy a new utility vehicle.

“Of course it’s wonderful news for the Town of Fort Kent and the Fort Kent Fire Department,” Fire Chief Ed Endee said of the award announced on Wednesday, Sept. 6. “We struggle with finding funds to be able to purchase and replace much needed equipment through the regular budget process so whenever we have a chance we apply for grants.”

Endee wrote the grant, which town administrative assistant Cindy Bouley helped him file with FEMA.

The new vehicle will help local firefighters fight brush fires and also will help them tow their trail rescue ambulance and four wheeler to more remote areas.

“None of the fire trucks we have now is capable of going off road,” Endee said. “They’re even at risk for damage on gravel roads.”

The chief said a list of specifications for the new utility vehicle will be drawn up and the department will accept proposals from multiple vendors before deciding on which vehicle to purchase.

According to FEMA, applications for the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program “are ranked based on the substance of the application, relative to the established funding priorities.”

The fire department will have to come up with 5 percent in matching funds. FEMA will provide $119,048 and the department will contribute just over $5,000.

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