Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) voted to pass the bipartisan Fire Grants and Safety Act through the U.S. Senate. The bill will extend federal funding programs that Nevada firefighters depend on and provide fire departments with the resources they need to keep communities safe.
“I’ve worked hard in the Senate to make sure our firefighters have the resources they need to fight fires and keep Nevadans safe,” said Senator Cortez Masto. “Extending these programs and delivering these critical funds will help local fire departments hire more firefighters, upgrade equipment, and improve safety training for those who protect our communities every day.”
The Fire Grants and Safety Act would reauthorize the Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program and Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Program, both of which help provide funding for fire departments to purchase equipment and hire more firefighters. This bill would also increase the annual authorization for the U.S. Fire Administration by about $20 million while maintaining the authorized annual funding level for SAFER and AFG at $750 million.
Senator Cortez Masto secured billions for the Department of the Interior to support wildfire risk reduction, including $8 billion for wildfire prevention, suppression, and restoration activities and $10 million for wildfire detection equipment. Following her work to secure and implement
provisions in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, all federal wildland firefighters, including many working throughout Nevada, will see a significant pay raise through 2023. In 2021, Senator Cortez Masto introduced the Western Wildfire Support Act, which would allow communities across Nevada and the Western U.S. to invest in training, equipment, and funding to combat wild and rangeland fires. Senators Cortez Masto has also prioritized efforts to provide federal agencies with the resources they need to hire and retain vital firefighters year round.