Peoria fire to hire 11 new firefighters after receiving grant

Published: Oct. 4, 2022 at 9:21 PM CDT
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PEORIA (25 News Now) - 11 new firefights are joining the Peoria Fire Department and it’s thanks to the SAFER grant. It is a federally funded grant that helps with paying and hiring new fire fighters.

Last year the department was struggling to find enough men to join the team, so they applied for the SAFER grant to help bridge that gap. The grant is enough money to pay all the expenses of 11 firefighters like health care and salary for the next four years, that’s about 4 million dollars. The 11 new men will be working fire engine two – an engine that is currently sustained by overtime workers.

“The relief, the man power that’s needed for engine two. One we knew that engine two just having firefighters on it was vitally important to our success to our fire department now getting the proper amount of fighter fighters to staff that is such a relief,” Peoria Fire Chief Shawn Sollberger said.

Under The SAFER grant the fire department must keep at least 171 firefighters.