SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The Troy City Fire Department and Saratoga Springs Fire Department will receive nearly $8M in federal funding from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) program. The Troy Fire Department will receive $3,688,160, while the Saratoga Springs Fire Department will receive $4,154,523.52. The grants will be put toward staffing more firefighters.

“As has been widely publicized, the Troy Fire Department is experiencing a staffing shortage,” Chief Eric McMahon of the Troy Fire Department said. “Thanks to the efforts of Senator Schumer, the City of Troy Fire Department has been awarded a significant grant that will fund the hiring of new firefighters to bring us up to full strength.  The Senator has been a longtime proponent and supporter of the Troy Fire Department for which we are very grateful.”

This grant will provide staffing to the Saratoga Springs Fire Department Fire Station #3, which is currently under construction. The station will reportedly be staffed 24 hours a day, as well as provide fire and emergency medical services to the Central and Eastern portions of Saratoga Springs.

“I would like to thank the FEMA-SAFER program for recognizing our need for 16 additional firefighters,” said City of Saratoga Springs Fire Chief Joseph Dolan. “The award of this FEMA-SAFER will help ensure that the citizens of Saratoga Springs will continue to receive the best fire and emergency services in New York State and move the Saratoga Springs Fire Department closer to providing adequate staffing as we build our third station. We appreciate all the efforts made on our behalf by our Federal partners.”

“Troy and Saratoga Springs firefighters have worked non-stop battling on the frontlines of the pandemic and keeping our communities safe, and when I heard our fire departments were struggling to keep staffing up I promised to deliver the fed dollars to give our heroes the support they need,” said U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer.

“New York’s brave firefighters put their lives on the line to keep us safe,” said U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. “We have to do everything we can to make sure they have the resources and personnel they need to respond to emergencies as quickly as possible.”