BUXTON — U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree announced Wednesday that the Buxton Fire Department will receive a federal Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response ”“ SAFER ”“ grant for $441,460 to hire four full-time firefighters.

“Maine municipalities are struggling these days to cover essential services with fewer and fewer resources, and that has meant things like emergency departments going understaffed,” said Pingree. “That’s what makes these SAFER grants so critical for a state like ours ”“ communities can get help to cover their needs without having to raise taxes or cut other services. I’m so glad Buxton will receive this federal investment so it can strengthen its emergency response team to keep residents safe.”

The funds will be enough to pay for four full-time firefighter/EMTs for two years.

“This is great news,” said Buxton Fire Chief Nathan Schools. “We are predominantly a volunteer fire department, and these new positions will be especially helpful in improving coverage during the day when our volunteers are at their other jobs.”

SAFER is administered by the Department of Homeland Security.

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