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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response: The SAFER Grant Program

Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response: The SAFER Grant Program

Date: June 13, 2011
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G.
Description: The Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response Act (the "SAFER Act") was enacted by the 108th Congress as part of the FY2004 National Defense Authorization Act. This report describes the SAFER Act in brief, discusses possible budgetary modifications to the SAFER Act that are being considered due to the recent economic downturn, and explores related issues for the 112th Congress as they consider reauthorization.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Funding Emergency Communications: Technology and Policy Considerations

Funding Emergency Communications: Technology and Policy Considerations

Date: June 23, 2011
Creator: Moore, Linda K.
Description: This report covers U.S. efforts to find a solution that assures seamless communications among first responders and emergency personnel at the scene of a major disaster. Legislation in the 112th Congress includes the Public Safety Spectrum and Wireless Innovation Act, the Broadband for Public Safety Act of 2011, the Broadband for First Responders Act, and the Strengthening Public-safety and Enhancing Communications Through Reform, Utilization, and Modernization (SPECTRUM) Act.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Federal Funding for Wildfire Control and Management

Federal Funding for Wildfire Control and Management

Date: July 5, 2011
Creator: Gorte, Ross W.
Description: This report looks at four issues dominating wildfire funding debates: the high cost of fire management, funding for fuel reduction, the federal role in protecting nonfederal lands, and post-fire rehabilitation. The Forest Service (FS) and the Department of the Interior (DOI) are responsible for protecting most federal lands from wildfires, however, many in Congress are concerned that wildfire costs are spiraling upward without a reduction in damages.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Considerations for a Catastrophic Declaration: Issues and Analysis

Considerations for a Catastrophic Declaration: Issues and Analysis

Date: July 6, 2011
Creator: Lindsay, Bruce R. & McCarthy, Francis X.
Description: This report examines concerns expressed by policymakers and experts that current Stafford Act declarations are inadequate to respond to, and recover from, highly destructive events. It presents the arguments for and against amending the act to add a catastrophic declaration amendment. This report also includes data analyses of past and potential disasters to determine what incidents might be deemed as catastrophic, and explores alternative policy options that might obviate the need for catastrophic declarations.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Congressional Primer on Major Disasters and Emergencies

Congressional Primer on Major Disasters and Emergencies

Date: August 31, 2011
Creator: McCarthy, Francis X. & Brown, Jared T.
Description: This report covers the role of the government in disaster management. While the disaster response and recovery process is fundamentally a relationship between the federal government and the requesting state government, there are roles for congressional offices to play in providing information to the federal/state response and recovery teams in their respective states and districts. Congressional offices also serve as a valuable source of accurate and timely information to their constituents.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Earthquakes: Risk, Detection, Warning, and Research

Earthquakes: Risk, Detection, Warning, and Research

Date: September 2, 2011
Creator: Folger, Peter
Description: This report discusses the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP), a program under which the federal government supports efforts to assess and monitor earthquake hazards and risk in the United States. This report also discusses earthquake hazards and risk in the United States; federal programs that support earthquake monitoring; the U.S. capability to detect earthquakes and issue notifications and warnings; and federally supported research to improve the fundamental scientific understanding of earthquakes with a goal of reducing U.S. vulnerability.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response: The SAFER Grant Program

Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response: The SAFER Grant Program

Date: September 15, 2011
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G.
Description: The Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response Act (the "SAFER Act") was enacted by the 108th Congress as part of the FY2004 National Defense Authorization Act. This report describes the SAFER Act in brief, discusses possible budgetary modifications to the SAFER Act that are being considered due to the recent economic downturn, and explores related issues for the 112th Congress as they consider reauthorization.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Funding Emergency Communications: Technology and Policy Considerations

Funding Emergency Communications: Technology and Policy Considerations

Date: October 4, 2011
Creator: Moore, Linda K.
Description: This report identifies areas where changes in existing policies and practices may facilitate achievement of the important goals for emergency communications that Congress and others have identified. Why these goals have become important, and recent planning efforts to achieve these goals, is discussed first. Next, possible barriers to achieving these goals are identified and described. The conclusion revisits key options presently under consideration by Congress.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response: The SAFER Grant Program

Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response: The SAFER Grant Program

Date: January 3, 2012
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G.
Description: In response to concerns over the adequacy of firefighter staffing, the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response Act—popularly called the “SAFER Act”—was enacted by the 108th Congress as Section 1057 of the FY2004 National Defense Authorization Act (P.L. 108-136). The SAFER Act authorizes grants to career, volunteer, and combination local fire departments for the purpose of increasing the number of firefighters to help communities meet industry-minimum standards and attain 24-hour staffing to provide adequate protection from fire and fire-related hazards. Concern over local fire departments' budgetary problems has framed debate over the SAFER reauthorization, which is included in S. 550/H.R. 2269, the Fire Grants Authorization Act of 2011. Previously in the 111th Congress, reauthorization legislation for SAFER was passed by the House, but was not passed by the Senate. As part of the reauthorization debate, Congress may consider whether some SAFER rules and restrictions governing the hiring grants should be eliminated or altered in order to make it economically feasible for more fire departments to participate in the program.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
United States Fire Administration: An Overview

United States Fire Administration: An Overview

Date: January 3, 2012
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G.
Description: The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA)—which includes the National Fire Academy (NFA)—is currently housed within the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The objective of the USFA is to significantly reduce the nation's loss of life from fire, while also achieving a reduction in property loss and non-fatal injury due to fire. The United States Fire Administration Reauthorization Act of 2008 was signed into law on October 8, 2008. As is the case with many federal programs, concerns in the 112th Congress over the federal budget deficit could impact budget levels for the USFA. Debate over the USFA budget has focused on whether the USFA is receiving an appropriate level of funding to accomplish its mission, given that appropriations for USFA have consistently been well below the agency's authorized level. An ongoing issue is the viability and status of the USFA and National Fire Academy within the Department of Homeland Security.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department