GREAT BEND, Kan. (KWCH) The Great Bend Fire Department has been rewarded a $322,359 federal grant allowing them to hire three new firefighters.
The SAFER (Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response) grant will help pay wages and benefits for three new firefighters.
These three additional firefighters will raise the number of personnel on each of the three shifts from eight to nine.
The grant will pay 75% the first two years and 35% the third year of the new firefighters’ wages and benefits.
After the third year, the city will be responsible for funding the entirety of the new firefighters’ wages and benefits.
“This SAFER grant is such a blessing to our department. For the past two years, Battalion Chief Eugene Perkins and I have been looking for ways to help fund extra personnel without putting the burden on the City’s Budget,” says retired Fire Chief Mike Napolitano.