Firewise Community Grants

FireWise Minnesota

Grant overview

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources welcomes applications from communities recognized as Firewise USA® Communities (or those using grant funds to become a Firewise USA® Community) to assist in either:

  • The development of a Community Wildfire Preparedness Plan or
  • Wildfire hazard mitigations

Firewise is a national program focused on creating safe access and defensible spaces for homes in the wildland-urban interface so they can survive in the event a wildfire threatens.

Funding for these grants is made possible through the Cooperative Forestry Assistance Act of 1978. Available funding for wildfire hazard mitigation projects may vary. Applicants are encouraged to work with their Regional Firewise Specialist before applying to ensure project funds are available.

Eligible applicants

Eligible applicants include fire districts, organized townships, cities, counties, identified subdivisions or homeowner’s associations, and NGOs.

Applicants must:

  • Be recognized as or use grant funds to become a Firewise USA® Community
  • Have a Wildfire Emergency Action Plan*
  • Implement the proposal, document outcomes, and submit final reports on time.

* The Wildfire Action Plan requirement may be met in multiple ways.

  • A Community Wildfire Protection Plan
  • Wildfire Emergency Action Plan
  • Emergency Operations Plans (EOP) or Hazard Mitigation Plans (HMP) are prepared by emergency management agencies or fire departments/districts if they contain specific information addressing the items listed above.

If no plan exists, the grant request should be for developing a CWPP or modifications and additions to an EOP to address wildfire concerns.

Eligible project expenses

Funds can be used for one or more of three Firewise project categories: assessment and planning, mitigation, and information and education. Additional details on eligible projects can be found in Firewise eligible project examples.


Priority will be given to applicants who:

  • Benefit a low-income community
  • Complete project work in an area identified as having high wildfire hazard potential.
  • A community is creating a new CWPP or becoming a new Firewise USA site.

This is a priority for funding, so if you check "no," you are still eligible for funding but will not receive as many points. Applicants should clearly demonstrate and document if the project meets one or both priorities.

Applicants should also:

Applicants should refer to the Request for Proposals for details on each requirement.

Match requirements

These grants require a 50 percent match. Matching funds may be in‐kind, cash match, or both. Matching funds must be documented and reportable and are subject to audit.

How to apply

  1. Read through the Firewise Community Grants Request for Proposals
  2. Read through the supporting documents before beginning your application:
  3. Complete the Application.
  4. Email or Mail your application to your Regional Firewise Specialist. Electronic submissions must be sent by June 30, 2024. Mailed applications must be postmarked by June 30, 2024.

Review process and timeline

All eligible and complete applications received by the deadline will be evaluated. The DNR will review all recommendations and is responsible for award decisions. The award decisions of the DNR are final and not subject to appeal.

RFP posted on the DNR website January 23, 2024
Questions are due no later than 4:30 pm Central TimeJune 21, 2024  
Applications due or postmarked byJune 30, 2024
Committee begins review of applications    July 1, 2024      
Committee recommendations submitted to the commissioner for reviewAugust 1, 2024  
Grant begins after grantee receives executed agreement from the DNR*January 1, 2025
Project work completed, and final reports due   June 30, 2026



All questions can be directed to your Regional Firewise Specialist no later than June 21, 2024. All questions will be answered and posted below.

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