This past month, Congressman Michael Cloud (TX-27) toured the town of Refugio’s newly reconstructed fire station and received an update from town leaders. The station was severely damaged by Hurricane Harvey in 2017 and rebuilt with the assistance of funds from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Public Assistance (PA) Grant Program.
Recently, the Town received a $106,666.67 grant from the Department of Homeland Security’s FY 2020 Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program (AFG) for operations and safety.
“In the past few years, the volunteer firefighters of Refugio have continuously endured hardships, never stopping to answer the call to respond to emergencies,” said Congressman Michael Cloud. “Through Hurricane Harvey and the COVID-19 pandemic, they bravely continue to serve. I am thankful we were able to assist in ensuring funding for the rebuilding of this station was awarded to support those who protect and serve us every day.”
Congressman Cloud also presented to Mayor Wanda Dukes and Fire Chief Ronald Williams an American Flag that was flown over the United States Capitol on Sept. 11, 2020.
“I feel this is a big boost to our community,” stated Mayor Dukes. “We have had very valuable equipment (the fire trucks) sitting out in the elements for four years. We are grateful to be able to house them in a new beautiful fire station. After Hurricane Harvey I made the Fire Station our first project. It has been a difficult struggle but well worth it. The town of Refugio’s fire department not only serves the town but also the county. Many times the department assists other communities. It’s wonderful to know that we don’t have to share half of the town’s RV Park that housed the fire trucks. The town is so proud to provide a new fire station for the men and women who volunteer to provide such an important and needed service to us. I believe that the new fire station is a big boost to the moral of the community. Thank you Congressman Cloud for all your help to make this happen.”
“Today was a very special day for Refugio Volunteer Fire Department,” stated Chief Williams. “Congressman Michael Cloud visited the new Fire Station that has been rebuilt due to the disaster of Hurricane Harvey. The Congressman has been very engaged with the FEMA project to rebuild the station. The members of the Refugio Volunteer Fire Department would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to Congressman Cloud for the assistance in making this project a reality.”
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program (AFG) is administered through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in cooperation with the U.S. Fire Administration. The AFG is one of three grant programs that constitute the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency’s focus on enhancing the safety of the public and firefighters with respect to fire and fire-related hazards.
The AFG program accomplishes this by awarding grants directly to fire departments, nonaffiliated EMS organizations, and State Fire Training Academies (SFTAs) to enhance their ability to protect the health and safety of the public, as well as that of first-responder personnel.