By Christine Bryant
The Prairie Township Fire Department has been awarded just over $3 million in federal grants to increase staffing, Chief Allen Scott reported at the Oct. 5 board of trustees meeting.
If the board approves the grant, it could fund nine full-time positions, bringing staffing levels to sufficient levels based on the township’s needs, Scott said.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) established the Staffing For Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant to provide funding directly to fire departments and volunteer firefighter interest organizations to help increase or maintain the number of trained, front-line firefighters in communities.
At the next board meeting on Oct. 19, Scott will ask the board for official acceptance of the SAFER grant, which can only be used for funding personnel positions. Scott said he is also putting together a plan that will address how the department will continue funding those positions once this particular grant expires.
In other news, trustees accepted a donation of $505,399 from the Galloway Baseball Club that will go toward installing turf on the in-field areas of diamonds two and four at the township’s sports complex.
Dave McAninch, service director for roads, cemeteries and parks, said with this donation, the Galloway Baseball Club has given more than $1.3 million for development of the park.