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By Alex Kowalski
PBN Staff Writer
CRANSTON – The city of Cranston has received a $3.45 million Safer grant to fund 20 new positions across six fire stations.
The one-time endowment, provided by the competitive Staffing and Adequate Fire and Emergency Response program, is designed to help secure employment and training for 17 “frontline” firefighters, as well as three other positions.
This isn’t the first federal award Cranston has received as of late. The city fire department took in a nearly $80,000 grant earlier this year in order to help fund infrastructure upgrades like fire alarm system improvements, according to a press release from the office of Sen. Jack Reed.
The Safer program was designed to give a “kick start” in frontline firefighter hiring, training and retention, with extra money in the budget to help the department comply with federal fire protection and work condition standards.
“This grant will allow us to strengthen our fire department by bolstering its ranks in difficult economic times,” Cranston Mayor Allan Fung said in prepared remarks.
Cranston’s SAFER grant is the fourth highest among those awarded this year. The Detroit and Phoenix fire departments took in the largest hiring grants, a sum of $5.61 million and $5.3 million, respectively.