SAFER grant helps staff fire department

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CHAMPAIGN — The fire department now has six new additions to its staff. It’s all possible because of a federal grant of $1.3 million.

SAFER stands for Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response. The department received the grant last year and Wednesday, the new recruits will start their academy training.

The grant pays for two full years of salaries. Four of them are starting basic training for the next six weeks. The other two have previous training and will start their shifts next week.

The SAFER grant was established right after 9/11. This is the first year the Champaign Fire Department has accepted it.

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