The Lompoc Fire Department is always looking to grants, especially during tough budget times. However, there's no guarantee these funds will come through and it's a time-consuming process. Without a dedicated grant writer at the fire department, officials say applying for and managing these funds is no easy task. The process can take up to 100 hours a year. While that process paid off in the form of an over $21,000 grant from Homeland Security, a multi-million dollar opportunity to address safety concerns at the decades-old fire station was abruptly taken away. The Lompoc Fire Department now has 13 new sets of body armor and new rope equipment for rescues. "Vehicles over the side, urban search and rescue types of deployment and most of the equipment that we had was over ten to fifteen years old," said Battalion Chief Brian Federmann, explaining what the new equipment will be used for.