The City of West Palm Beach will use grant funding to provide training and professional development to its firefighters. PHOTO COURTESY OF CHICAGO FIRE WIRE

Staff Report

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – The City of West Palm Beach Fire Rescue Department (WPBFR) has been named the recipient of an Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The announcement was made by FEMA on its website last week.

The grant of $159,873 will support WPBFR’s Operations and Safety Program. An amount of $102,900 of the grant has been earmarked for training.

“We are really pleased to be recipients of FEMA’s Firefighters Grant Award,” said Mayor Jeri Muoio. “FEMA’s award contributes to the future success of West Palm Beach Fire Rescue and, ultimately, to the safety and well-being of the citizens of West Palm Beach, our top priority.”

In addition to providing critical equipment to first responders, the grant will be utilized to develop existing personnel in both tactical and strategic aspects of the job.

The grant will train firefighters on the mutual aid system, incident command and disaster response. The newer firefighters hired in the last several years will become state certified in operating the engines and ladder trucks.

“We’re really excited about this grant,” said West Palm Beach Fire Rescue Chief Diana Matty. “The grant will help our fire fighters to better serve the public and to be better community partners. A key aspect of that is professional development. This grant will go a long way toward making that happen.”

The primary goal of the Assistance to Firefighters Grants is to enhance the safety of the public and firefighters with respect to fire-related hazards by providing direct financial assistance to eligible fire departments, non-affiliated Emergency Medical Services (EMS) organizations and State Fire Training Academies (SFTA).

This funding is for critically needed resources to equip and train emergency personnel to recognized standards, enhance operations efficiencies, foster interoperability and support community resilience.

AFG grants are awarded to: fire departBeach ments, state fire training academies and emergency medical service organizations. The intended audiences are AFG stakeholders, which include, but are not limited to, award recipients and the communities they serve.

For more information about West Palm Fire Rescue, visit

For more information about the Assistance to Firefighters Grant, visit FEMA at