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Thursday, January 20, 2011

United States Fire Administration: An Overview

Lennard G. Kruger
Specialist in Science and Technology Policy

The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA)—which includes the National Fire Academy (NFA)—is currently housed within the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The objective of the USFA is to significantly reduce the nation’s loss of life from fire, while also achieving a reduction in property loss and non-fatal injury due to fire. The United States Fire Administration Reauthorization Act of 2008 (H.R. 4847/S. 2606) was signed into law on October 8, 2008 (P.L. 110-376).

P.L. 111-83, the FY2010 Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill, provided $45.588 million for USFA, the same level as the Administration’s proposal. The Administration’s FY2011 budget proposal requested $45.930 million for USFA, an increase of 0.7% from the FY2010 level. The House Appropriations Subcommittee and the Senate Appropriations Committee both matched the Administration request for the USFA. The Continuing Appropriations and Surface Transportation Extension Act, 2011 (P.L. 111-322) funds USFA at FY2010 levels through March 4, 2011.

As is the case with many federal programs, concerns in the 112
th Congress over the federal budget deficit could impact budget levels for the USFA. Debate over the USFA budget has focused on whether the USFA is receiving an appropriate level of funding to accomplish its mission, given that appropriations for USFA have consistently been well below the agency’s authorized level. An ongoing issue is the viability and status of the USFA and National Fire Academy within the Department of Homeland Security. .

Date of Report: January 3, 2011
Number of Pages: 9
Order Number: RS20071
Price: $19.95

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