By Eden Laikin
During an Annual gathering of the Association of Fire Districts of Nassau County at the Crest Hollow Country Club in Woodbury on Friday, County Executive Mangano thanked all the members of the volunteer fire service for their “hard work and dedication” as part of the recovery efforts in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
“I witnessed, first-hand, the damage that was done to homes, businesses and property,” Mangano told firefighters and fire commissioners gathered at the event. “Without the help of Nassau’s volunteer firefighters we would have seen far more devastation and loss of life.”
Mangano said that throughout his administration, the training and safety of our firefighters and emergency responders have been one of his top priorities.
“Despite the severe budget crisis that we inherited, I maintained all funding at the Fire Service Academy and, with the help of state and federal grants, even increased the budget over the previous year,” Mangano said.
In 2010, Mangano worked with United States Senator Chuck Schumer to secure a Federal SAFER grant to recruit and retain first responders by providing volunteers with free college tuition. He was also able to secure funding for several VEEB training initiatives as well as for the purchase of new equipment.
Other accomplishments include repairing the 17-year-old oil water separator at the Fire Academy, allocating resources and supplies for the mask confidence building, and providing $2.3 million to build two burn training buildings.
Under Mangano’s leadership, a new $54 million state-of-the-art radio communication system was installed throughout Nassau County to support the firefighting radio communication system.