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EMS Grants News and Articles
Date last updated: Monday, August 20, 9:38 PST
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Ill. town to hire new firefighters first time in 4 years
By Jessica Cilella
Chicago Daily Herald
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. — The Hoffman Estates Fire Department will have an opportunity to hire new firefighters for the first time in more than four years thanks to a federal grant.
Fire Chief Robert Gorvett said while he still needs to meet with the village manager to discuss details before accepting the money, he is excited that the department was offered a $581,565 grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
"We would certainly like to work toward raising our staffing level up, and obviously if we're going to be able to do this with federal money it's a big boost for the village," Gorvett said.
Since 2008, the number of Hoffman Estates firefighters has decreased from 106 to 93, Gorvett said. There were never any layoffs, but as people retired they weren't replaced.
If the grant is accepted, the plan would be to hire three new firefighters for a two-year period, Gorvett said. However, it is likely that at least three current employees will retire within in those years, meaning the department might be able to keep the new hires permanently once the grant runs out.
The use of the grant money is limited to salaries and benefits for new employees. Assuming they had no prior experience, the department would have to pay to put the new hires through the fire academy, emergency medical technician school and paramedic school.
That, along with the cost of protective clothing, would cost about $15,000 per employee.
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