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FEMA to hold ‘listening sessions’ about fire grants application process

The agency is looking for feedback about, NFIRS, FEMA GO and other Assistance to Firefighters Grants program application issues


If you are anything like me, you have probably wondered hundreds of times why FEMA doesn’t change some of the Characteristic Questions in the Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) program application or why we even need a Unique Entity ID (UEI) number anymore.

Looks like FEMA has heard our collective grumblings or at least felt the same way, as FEMA will hold four online “Listening Sessions” at the end of April. This type of opportunity is a first for FEMA.

This is your chance to be heard on topics such as the usability of online systems, such as the System for Award Management (, the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS), and FEMA Grants Outcomes (GO); availability of technical assistance; application completion and submission; and any other identified issues.

FEMA hopes to use comments and suggestions to improve the AFG program and make the FEMA application process more user-friendly for fire departments. It is also your chance to hear directly from FEMA representatives why the agency uses some of its processes or tools in the application process.

Each session is expected to last one hour and will include a brief introduction, time to identify issues, a collaborative brainstorming session, and time for questions and answers. The sessions are limited to 1,500 attendants. If demand exceeds the planned sessions, consideration will be given to providing additional opportunities.

Find the schedule for the listening sessions below. To register, click the link for the session you’d like to attend.

FY 2022 AFG Listening Session Schedule


Date & Time (ET)

Registration Link

Listening Session 1

April 24, 2023, 2 p.m.

Click to register

Listening Session 2

April 25, 2023, 5 p.m.

Click to register

Listening Session 3

April 26, 2023, 10 a.m.

Click to register

Listening Session 4

April 27, 2023, 12 p.m.

Click to register

If you are unable to attend, please send any suggestions or comments you may have regarding the FY 2022 AFG application period to

Jerry Brant is a senior grant consultant and grant writer with FireGrantsHelp and EMSGrantsHelp. He has 46 years of experience as a volunteer firefighter in west-central Pennsylvania. He is a life member of the Hope Fire Company of Northern Cambria, where he served as chief for 15 years. He is an active member of the Patton Fire Company 1 and serves as safety officer. Brant graduated from Saint Francis University with a bachelor’s degree in political science. In 2003, he was awarded a James A Johnson Fellowship by the FannieMae Foundation for his accomplishments in community development, and in 2019, he was honored as with the Leroy C Focht Sr. Memorial Award from the Central District Volunteer Fireman’s Association. He has successfully written more than $70 million in grant applications. Brant can be reached via email.