The 2016 Assistance to Firefighters Grants application period is right around the corner. Start planning your application now.

Deerwood AFG - Deerwood, MN_PW (1)

The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) 2016 Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) application period is quickly approaching. Before you know it the kids will be back in school and you’ll have a pile of leaves in your yard. Start preparing for your application now to ensure it’s accurate, complete, and will be submitted on time. This year more than $300 million in grants is available nationwide. Here is what you need to know about the AFG program.

Grants are available for fire departments, nonaffiliated Emergency Medical Service organizations, and State Fire Training Academies.

The primary goal of the AFG is to meet the firefighting and emergency response needs of fire departments and nonaffiliated Emergency Medical Service organizations. Since 2001, AFG has helped firefighters and other first responders to obtain critically needed equipment, protective gear, emergency vehicles, training and other resources needed to protect the public and emergency personnel from fire and related hazards.

All funding assistance is provided through grants. Cost sharing requirements under the FY 2016 AFG Program will be announced when guidance is published. Historically, it has been based on the population protected by the grantee. In most cases for communities in our region, a 5% local match is required, with 95% provided by the AFG program.

If you are considering applying, now is a great time to make sure you have everything in order and ready to go. The application window is typically open only four to five weeks. We’ll let you know when the specific application period has been announced.

Here are some things to keep in mind as you get ready to start your application:

  • Make sure your System for Award Management (SAM) account is completely up-to-date.
  • A Dun & Bradstreet (DUNS) Number is required. This unique nine-digit number identifies your business.
    • DUNS Number assignment is free for all businesses required to register with the federal government for contracts or grants.
    • Visit to obtain a DUNS Number of your own.
  • Double-check that your IRS information is current.


FEMA AFG Website

For FY 2015, our team helped eight departments secure grants, totaling $750,000 in awards. Here’s the WSN difference:

  • Our success rate for FY 2015 was more than double the national average for AFG applications.
  • We visit each fire department in person.
  • We listen to your requests, considering all incidents and gaining insight about your fire department’s specific needs.
  • We don’t “cut-and-paste” boilerplate content to create your application. We will customize each application to best suit you and your department’s needs.

If you have a project that needs funding, contact one of Widseth Smith Nolting’s funding specialists today.

Pat Conroy

Jordan Lee