Denver, CO - Federal funds to help with certain state and local firefighting costs for the Lincoln Complex fire were authorized late Wednesday afternoon by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Michael D. Brown, FEMA Director and Under Secretary for Emergency Preparedness and Response at the Department of Homeland Security, approved a Fire Management Assistance Grant about an hour after the state requested the aid, because of reports that the fire was rapidly growing and there was an imminent threat to lives and homes.
The Lincoln Complex fire, which began August 14, is burning in Lewis & Clark and Powell counties, about 40 miles east of Missoula. As of late Wednesday, the fire reportedly had burned 15,000 to 20,000 acres and was threatening more than 100 homes, forcing the evacuation of about 150 residents.
These funds for the Lincoln Complex fire represent the seventh fire management grant FEMA has authorized for Montana since July 23. The Fire Management Assistance Grant program makes federal funding available to pay 75 percent of eligible state and local firefighting costs for managing, mitigating and controlling fires that threaten to cause major disasters.
Eligible costs covered by the aid can include expenses for field camps; equipment use, repair and replacement; tools, materials and supplies; and mobilization and demobilization activities.
On March 1, 2003, FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. FEMA?s continuing mission within the new department is to lead the effort to prepare the nation for all hazards and effectively manage federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident. FEMA also initiates proactive mitigation activities, trains first responders, and manages Citizens Corps, the National Flood Insurance Program and the U.S. Fire Administration.