The Bettendorf City Council voted to accept a FEMA grant to hire six new firefighters in six months.

According to a release, the move is part of the city’s commitment to keep citizens and properties safe. The grant is a SAFER (Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response) Grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) totaling $2,053,398. According to FEMA, the SAFER Grants were “created to provide funding directly to fire departments and volunteer firefighter interest organizations to help them increase or maintain the number of trained, ‘front line’ firefighters available in their communities.” Since Fiscal Year 2005, FEMA has awarded approximately $5.1 billion in SAFER Grants, and Bettendorf’s grant is designed to provide 100% of the funding for new firefighters’ base salary and benefits for three years.

“This award guarantees full staffing of an engine company at our Surrey Heights Fire Station 24/7 on all three shifts, which meets a top goal in the Mayor and City Council’s 2022-23
Strategic Plan,” Fire Chief Troy Said said. “Most importantly, it provides better overall service to
our citizens in that area and throughout the entire city.”

The City of Bettendorf is growing, so the added firefighters will help fill any potential need. “As our City continues to grow, so does the demand for services,” Said said. “I appreciate our City
Administration and the continued support of our Council Members recognizing the need for
increased staffing in public safety. These additional six firefighters will not only enhance our
services in the northern part of our City, but they will also help provide future structure to our
entire fire department’s organization.”

For more information about SAFER Grants, click here.