During the Jan. 3 meeting, the Foley City Council approved staff to apply for DHS/FEMA’s FY2021 SAFER (staffing for adequate fire and emergency response) grant program. If awarded, the grant would pay 100% of the salaries for nine new firefighters for three years. The City of Foley would take over the salaries during the 2025/2026 fiscal year. There is no match required with the program. This would be the fourth time the Foley Fire Department has hired officers through the SAFER grant. The application is due by Feb. 4.
“We’re trying to prepare for the future with our increased demand,” said Fire Chief Joey Darby. “We’re looking towards a fire station somewhere in our southwest quadrant, that’s where our big need is going to be. Obviously to build a fire station, we’re going to have to have staffing down the road.”
Each year, the grant appears with different criteria. Darby said the department was previously awarded a grant that paid 100% of new staff salaries for two years. He said this year’s grant is the most he has seen during his time with the department.
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