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Jacksonville Gets Grant To Hire New Firefighters

James Croft
City of Jacksonville

The city of Jacksonville has been awarded a nearly $6 million federal grant to hire 67 positions in the Fire and Rescue Department over the next two years.The grant comes from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and FEMA.

The Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant provides for the hired firefighters salary and some benefits for two years.

Mayor Alvin Brown said the grant will help fill some needed positions in the JFRD.

"We have 91 vacancies and this will help us have more people on the front line not only to just put out fires like they did the other day with Olive Garden restaurant but also the 911 emergency calls," he said. "That senior who may call."

The grant is subject to approval by the city council and the appropriation must occur within 30 days.

The vacancies have occurred through attrition the past two years.

You can follow Kevin Meerschaert on Twitter @KMeerschaertJax.

Kevin Meerschaert has left WJCT for new pursuits. He was the producer of First Coast Connect until October of 2018.