Ewing Township has been awarded a federal grant of nearly $1 million to bolster its emergency services department by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response Grant, which was for $971,469, is to be used to hire or retain firefighters.

“The SAFER grant will enhance our staffing needs and our ability to deliver to the best services possible to Ewing residents, and help us keep our community safe,” said Mayor Bert Steinmann. “Our firefighters put their lives on the line each day, and we must make certain that they have the resources they need to save lives.”

Once hired, the new firefighters will join the township’s current staff of nine full-time members who are currently assigned to the various township stations, according to Steinmann.

The SAFER program is administered by FMA and seeks to increase the number of frontline firefighters to ensure that their communities have adequate protection from fire and fire­related hazards.

The grant will pay for the salaries and medical benefits of the new firefighters for three full years. “This funding allows us to ensure the safety of our residents while keeping taxes stable,” Steinmann said.