FEMA and Disaster Relief

97-159 GOV CRS Report for Congress Received through the CRS Web FEMA and Disaster Relief Updated March 6, 1998 Keith Bea Specialist in American National Government Government Division Congressional Research Service ˜ The Library of Congress FEMA and Disaster Relief Summary The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) helps states and localities prepare for and cope with disasters that overwhelm their own capabilities. FEMA administers policies related to emergency management and planning, disaster relief, fire prevention, earthquake hazard reduction, emergency broadcasting services, flood insurance, mitigation programs, and dam safety. President Clinton has requested $3.1 billion for FEMA in FY1999. The majority of the funds ($2.3 billion, or 75%) are requested as disaster relief funding that would only be available should the President and Congress designate it as emergency funding under the Balanced Budget Act. The remaining 25% ($844 million) would fund agency salaries, grants to state and local governments, and training activities, and would replenish the Disaster Relief Fund with $308 million. For the past 14 years, annual appropriations for FEMA have ranged from as little as $600 million to a high of approximately $5.9 billion, including supplemental measures. For FY1998, a total of $842 million is available, as appropriated in P.L. 105-65. In FY1997 a total of $5.1 billion was appropriated—$1.8 billion in the FY1997 appropriations legislation (P.L. 104-204) and $3.3 billion in supplemental appropriations (P.L. 105-18). The principal federal authority for the provision of disaster relief is the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (the Stafford Act). The act authorizes the President to issue major disaster or emergency declarations (the latter provide considerably less federal assistance than the former), sets out eligibility criteria, and specifies the types of assistance the President may authorize. Specifically, grants are provided to individuals to meet urgent housing needs, purchase necessary personal items, and obtain legal services needed as a result of the disaster. For state and local governments and non-profit corporations, funds are provided for the repair or reconstruction of infrastructure damaged or destroyed, for debris removal, and for the construction of protective measures. In addition to this assistance authorized under the Stafford Act, federal disaster assistance is provided by the Small Business Administration, the Department of Defense, the Department of Transportation, and other agencies. Funding for Stafford Act related activities varies from one year to another, depending on the severity and frequency of declared catastrophes. In recent years billions of dollars have been appropriated to help communities recover from Hurricane Andrew, the Northridge earthquake, and other incidents. In response to congressional demands, the Clinton Administration has submitted legislation (S. 1007/H.R. 2446) to reduce certain disaster relief expenditures. The legislation would also increase certain expenditures and federal authority for hazard mitigation activities. Contents Overview of FEMA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Basic Authorities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Statutes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Executive Orders . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Agency Funding . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 2 2 3 4 Disaster Relief . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Overview of the Stafford Act . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Types of Major Disaster Assistance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Human Services . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Infrastructure Assistance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Hazard Mitigation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Sequence of Events . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Cost Share Requirements and Waivers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Funding . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Appendix A. Significant Federal Disaster Relief Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 Appendix B. Major Disaster and Emergency Declarations and Number of States Affected, 1975-1997 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Appendix C. FEMA Major Disaster Assistance, by State, Calendar Years 1974-1997 26 Appendix D: FEMA Organization Chart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 List of Tables Table 1. FEMA Funding, FY1984-FY1999 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Table 2. FEMA Funding by Account, Requests, Appropriations and Outlays, FY1997-FY1999 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Table 3. Stafford Act Obligations for Recent, Costly Major Disasters, as of July 1995 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Table 4. Major Disaster Declarations with Cost Share Adjustments, November 1985 - August 1997 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Table 5. Disaster Relief Fund: Requests, Appropriations, and Outlays, FY1974FY1998 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Table C. FEMA Major Disaster Assistance, by State, 1974-1997 (dollars in thousands, constant 1997) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 FEMA and Disaster Relief Overview of FEMA The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) was established in June 1979 by President Carter to improve the responsiveness of the federal government to catastrophes in the United States and insular areas. FEMA provides financial and technical assistance to states and localities overwhelmed by disasters. FEMA administers policies related to emergency management and planning, evacuation, and matters often associated with civil defense, disaster relief, fire prevention, earthquake hazard reduction, emergency broadcasting services, flood insurance, mitigation programs,1 and dam safety. Prior to the development of FEMA, these functions were administered by various agencies of the executive branch, such as the Defense Civil Preparedness Agency of the Department of Defense, the Federal Disaster Assistance Administration of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (disaster relief), and the National Fire Prevention and Control Administration of the Department of Commerce (fire prevention and control).2 Overview information on FEMA is available on the World Wide Web at http://www.fema.gov. The current Director of FEMA is James Lee Witt. In November 1993, FEMA reorganized the agency’s 2,500 employees into five directorates, two administrations (the Federal Insurance Administration and the U.S. Fire Administration) and 10 regional offices. The most recent organizational chart of FEMA is presented in Appendix D of this report. FEMA on occasion has been enveloped in controversy. In 1992, the agency was criticized for actions not taken after Hurricane Andrew struck south Florida. Some 1 Mitigation activities reduce losses in future disasters through structural changes (e.g., building dams or levees) and nonstructural changes (e.g., modifying land use patterns, relocating communities, or enacting and enforcing zoning ordinances). 2 U.S. President (Carter), “Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1978,” H. Doc. 95-356, 95th Cong., 2nd sess. (Washington: GPO, 1978) p . 6 and “Federal Emergency Management Agency,” Executive Order 12127, Public Papers of the Presidents, Jimmy Carter (Washington: GPO, Mar. 31, 1979) p. 566 and “Federal Emergency Management,” Executive Order 12148, Public Papers of the Presidents, Jimmy Carter (Washington: GPO, July 20, 1979) p. 1277. CRS-2 argued that administrators had not fully integrated the many missions of the agency.3 The reorganization of the agency in 1993 was the Clinton Administration’s response to that criticism and to concerns expressed by Members of Congress and others that the agency should focus on its core function, disaster relief.4 The Government Performance and Results Act (P.L. 103-62) requires that federal agencies develop strategic plans and objectives, measure performance, and link budgets to performance plans. The intent is to encourage efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability in spending practices. In September 1997, FEMA released its first strategic plan pursuant to the Act’s requirements.5 The mission statement in the agency plan focuses FEMA’s efforts to reduce future loss of life and property through timely delivery of assistance that is intended to help communities restore damaged services and rebuild facilities. Most emergency management responsibilities for the agency are addressed in the plan. A few authorities, notably that pertaining to the Emergency Food and Shelter program, are not mentioned or receive little attention.6 Basic Authorities FEMA is charged with the administration of a range of authorities and programs. The most significant responsibilities and the pertinent authorities are found in the following statutes and executive orders. Statutes. Continuity of government. (National Security Act of 1947, 50 U.S.C. 404, 405 and Defense Production Act of 1950, 50 U.S.C. App. 2061 et seq.) Disaster relief. Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq. Includes civil defense authorities previously found in Civil Defense Act of 1950, 50 U.S.C. App. 2251 et seq.) Earthquakes. (Earthquake Hazards Reduction Act of 1977, 42 U.S.C. 7701 et seq.) 3 National Academy of Public Administration, (Washington: 1993), pp. 41-68. Coping with Catastrophe, 4 See, for example: U.S. Congress, Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs, Rebuilding FEMA: Preparing for the Next Disaster, hearing, 103rd Cong., 1st sess., May 18, 1993 (Washington: GPO, 1994), p. 335. For a discussion of the reorganization of FEMA see: Richard T. Sylves, “Ferment at FEMA: Reforming Emergency Management,” Public Administration Review, vol. 54, May/June 1994, pp. 303-307. 5 U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency, Partnership for a Safer Future (Washington: Sept. 1997), p. 62. The strategic plan is also available on the FEMA website at http://www.fema.gov/library/spln_1.htm, visited Feb. 20, 1998. 6 For an analysis of the final strategic plan see: U.S. Library of Congress, Congressional Research Service, Federal Emergency Management Agency and the 1997 Government Performance and Results Act Strategic Plan, by Keith Bea, CRS Report 98-38 GOV (Washington: Jan. 12, 1998), p. 31. CRS-3 Emergency food and shelter. (Title III, Stewart B. McKinney Homeless Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. 11331 et seq.) Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act of 1986. (42 U.S.C. 11001 et seq.) Fire control. (Federal Fire Prevention and Control Act of 1974, 15 U.S.C. 2201 et seq.) Flood insurance. (National Flood Insurance Act of 1968, 42 U.S.C. 4001 et seq.) Hazardous Materials Transportation Act. (49 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.) Nuclear facility emergencies. (Atomic Energy Act of 1954, 42 U.S.C. 2011 et seq.) Nuclear Regulatory Commission Authorization of 1980. (Atomic Energy Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. 2011 et seq.) Urban Property Protection and Reinsurance Act of 1968. (12 U.S.C. 1749666 et seq. National Insurance Development Fund) Executive Orders. E.O. 12148. Federal Emergency Management. July 20, 1979. Amended by Executive Orders 12155, 12156, 12319, 12356, 12379, 12381, and 12919. E.O. 12155. Strategic and Critical Materials. Sept. 10, 1979. Amended by Executive Order 12417. E.O. 12156. Federal Emergency Management Agency; Department of Energy. Sept. 10, 1979. E.O. 12241. National Contingency Plan. Sept. 29, 1980. E.O. 12265. Federal Consumer Programs. Jan. 15, 1981. Amended by Executive Order 12160. E.O. 12417. Strategic and Critical Materials. May 2, 1983. Amends Executive Order 12155. E.O. 12472. Assignment of National Security and Emergency Preparedness Telecommunications Functions. Apr. 3, 1984. E.O. 12656. Assignment of Emergency Preparedness Responsibilities. Nov. 18, 1988. CRS-4 E.O. 12657. Federal Emergency Management Agency Assistance in Emergency Preparedness Planning at Commercial Nuclear Power Plants. Nov. 18, 1988. E.O. 12699. Seismic Safety of Federal and Federally Assisted or Regulated New Building Construction. Jan. 5, 1990. E.O. 12788. Defense Economic Adjustment Program. Jan. 15, 1992. E.O. 12816. Management Improvement in the Federal Government. Oct. 14, 1992. E.O. 12919. National Defense Industrial Resources Preparedness. June 3, 1994. E.O. 12941. Seismic Safety of Existing Federally Owned or Leased Buildings. Dec. 1, 1994. Agency Funding. For the past 15 years the annual appropriations for FEMA have ranged from a low of $600 million to a high of approximately $5.9 billion. In FY1997, $5.1 billion was appropriated, including $3.3 billion in supplementals. FY1998 funding totals $829 million (current estimate). The wide variation in funding is generally attributable to supplemental appropriations enacted to provide assistance after particularly destructive hurricanes and earthquakes. Table 1, below, provides information on administration requests and the appropriations approved each year since 1984. Some patterns in requests and appropriations can be seen in Table 1. First, administration requests for operating accounts, emergency food and shelter, and other funding not associated with supplemental disaster relief hovered between $500 and $800 million, with relatively small shifts from one year to another. Second, appropriations have increased dramatically in recent years, compared to the lower levels approved during FY1984-FY1988. Third, in most years, appropriations usually have greatly exceeded requests, occasionally by magnitudes of four or five times the amount requested. The difficulty of planning for disaster funding needs is apparent in the funding pattern from FY1989-FY1996. In late September, 1989, (FY1989) Hurricane Hugo struck Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Carolinas. Two weeks later, on October 17, (FY1990) the Loma Prieta earthquake struck San Francisco. To meet the needs from these incidents, roughly $2 billion was appropriated. In FY1991, disaster relief funds were not needed due to the continued availability of appropriations from the previous two years. However, the arrival of Hurricane Andrew in 1992 created new demands, requiring appropriations of over $5 billion in FY1992 in response not only to that record-breaking event, but also to other CRS-5 catastrophes, including Hurricane Iniki (Hawaii) and Typhoon Omar (Guam).7 Perhaps of greatest significance, the $6 billion obligated by FEMA after the Northridge earthquake struck California in 1994 required additional supplemental appropriations. Table 1. FEMA Funding, FY1984-FY1999 (dollars in thousands) FY 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998c 1999 Administration request Constant Nominal $ 1997 $ $559,928 $842,124 $830,277 $1,198,610 $634,922 $891,119 $469,250 $633,180 $613,394 $801,927 $698,396 $885,840 $796,273 $966,233 $819,272 $955,977 $723,515 $827,252 $817,886 $912,107 $796,846 $869,634 $702,264 $743,451 $817,119 $837,899 $792,300 $696,956 $3,226,028 $2,819,955 $831,182 $708,595 Appropriations Constant Nominal $ 1997 $ $577,416 $868,425 $759,500 $1,096,434 $862,802 $1,210,950 $631,000 $851,437 $632,111 $826,397 $1,753,677 $2,224,349 $1,795,820 $2,179,129 $562,973 $656,911 $4,834,065 $5,527,172 $2,562,347 $2,857,530 $5,928,474 $6,470,014 $4,102,128 $4,342,714 $3,972,472 $4,073,495 $5,105,065 $4,490,733 $829,454 $725,047 NA NA Source: FEMA justification of budget estimates, published annually by House Committee on Appropriations. Constant dollar calculation based on chain-type price index for state and local government consumption, February 1998, obtained from U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis website (STATUSA subscription). a Initial request by the President. Does not include subsequent adjustments. Includes all appropriations, including supplementals. c Request for FY1998 included $2.4 billion for disaster relief. The FY1997 supplemental appropriations approved in P.L. 105-18 included $3.3 billion, $2.3 billion of which is available in FY1998. See Table 4 of this report for further information on disaster relief appropriations. d Request for FY1999 also includes emergency contingency request of $2.3 billion for disaster relief, pending designation of that amount as emergency funding by the President and the Congress. b Six appropriations accounts constitute FEMA’s budget, as summarized below: ! Salaries and expenses (S&E) - Funds used for employee salaries, benefits, and non-personnel costs such as travel, rental payments, supplies, and equipment. 7 Money is generally appropriated to the disaster relief fund not only for individual catastrophic events, but for all declared disasters as well. CRS-6 Allocations are made among directorates, administrations, and regional offices; ! Office of Inspector General (OIG) - Investigations, audits, and inspections are carried out with these funds. The Office of Inspector General was established by P.L. 100-504; ! Disaster Relief Fund (DRF) - As authorized by the Stafford Act (see next section of this report), funds are distributed to state and local governments, non-profit organizations, and individuals for assistance after the President declares a major disaster or an emergency. Also, the FEMA Director may award fire suppression assistance funds to lessen major fire destruction; ! Emergency Management and Planning Assistance (EMPA) - EMPA funds a range of emergency management programs for state and local governments. Grantees may use funds to improve readiness, simulations and drills, and fire prevention, and to undertake mitigation activities that reduce losses from future disasters. These funds are also used by FEMA to improve information technology, transportation, and communication facilities that are dispatched to disaster areas; ! Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) - Funding is distributed by a National Board (composed of representatives of certain voluntary agencies) to shelters and kitchens that serve the homeless. Local service providers may use the money to provide food, limited rental assistance, or home repair, or to operate shelters; ! Disaster Assistance Loan Subsidy (DLS) - Under the Stafford Act FEMA may provide loans to states or other public applicants which need assistance to meet the cost-share provisions. FEMA administers a number of revenue based funds that, as a rule, do not require appropriations. These include the following. 1. A Working Capital Fund was established in the FY1997 appropriations legislation (P.L. 104-204) to provide for more efficient administrative practices. Funds have not been appropriated; instead, future appropriations, payments from entities within FEMA, other federal agencies, or other sources “authorized by law” pay for administrative services better performed through central services. The fund was available without fiscal year limitation. The FY1998 appropriations legislation (P.L. 105-65) does not contain the Working Capital Fund provisions, but the request for FY1999 does contain such a provision. 2. The National Insurance Development Fund provided riot and crime insurance since the 1968 civil disturbances. Authority for this fund has expired, and the activity is being closed out. 3. The National Flood Insurance Fund reimburses homeowners who elect to participate in the program. Money necessary for payments is obtained from CRS-7 premium payments and borrowed from the U.S. Treasury. According to the Director of FEMA, roughly $800 million has been borrowed as of March 1998. 4. Bequests and gifts for disaster relief assistance are administered through the Cora Brown Fund. 5. The President’s request for FY1999 includes a one-time appropriation for the Radiological Emergency Preparedness (REP) Fund. The revenue in this fund, collected from licensed operators of nuclear power plants, is used to help state and local government prepare for possible incidents in communities surrounding those facilities. While such fees have been collected in past years to offset appropriations, the intent is to establish a self-supporting fund. Startup funding of $12.8 million is requested for FY1999. Table 2 provides detail on the six budget accounts for the agency for the most recent years, along with information on new budget proposals for FY1999. CRS-8 Table 2. FEMA Funding by Account, Requests, Appropriations and Outlays, FY1997-FY1999 (dollars in millions) FY1997 FY1998 FY1999 Appropriation Outlaya Request Appropriation Outlaya $2,758 $320 $3,252 b $2,566 NA $2,642 $208 $176 $172 $175 $171 NA $172 $219 $183 $265 $ 244 $228 $196 NA $218 $5 $5 $6 $5 $5 $5 $5 NA $5 EFS $100 $100 $100 $100 $100 $100 $100 NA $100 DLS $2 $2 $34 $2 $2 $7 $2 NA $2 NA $50 NA $25 NA $13 NA ($4) Request Appropriation Outlay DRF $320 $4,620 $2,551 S&E $167 $174 EMP $199 IG MIT NA NA NA REPe NA NA NA Request c d d d NA NA Sources: U.S. Office of Management and Budget, Appendix, Budget of the United States Government, Fiscal Year 1998, (Washington: 1997), pp. 1047-1055. and U.S. Congress, House Committee on Appropriations, Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, and Independent Agencies Appropriations for FY1998, 105th Cong., 1st sess. (Washington: 1997), p. 355. Appropriations include supplementals. Does not include transfers or rescissions. Note: Outlays may exceed appropriations in any fiscal year because funded activities may be carried over from previous fiscal years. This is particularly evident with regard to the Disaster Relief Fund as some repair and replacement contracts require years to pay down. a Estimates. Of this total $2.258 billion is requested as contingency funding, available only when designated by the President and the Congress as an emergency requirement under the Balanced Budget Act, as amended. c The FY1998 request included $50 million for a proposed mitigation program to be funded from the Disaster Relief Fund. d From the amount appropriated in the EMP account, $30 million is available in FY1998 for hazard mitigation grants; $1.5 million, for a specified project in Jackson, Mississippi. e The REP fund would be based on fees collected from Nuclear Regulatory Commission licensees. The FY1999 request is expected to be “one-time” funding to establish the fund. Offsetting receipts not shown. b Abbreviations: DRF - Disaster relief fund S&E - Salaries and expenses EMP - Emergency management and planning assistance IG - Office of Inspector General EFS - Emergency food and shelter program DLS - Disaster assistance loan program MIT - Pre-Disaster Mitigation REP - Radiological Emergency Preparedness CRS-9 Disaster Relief Overview of the Stafford Act The principal federal authority for the provision of disaster relief is the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act.8 The act authorizes the President to issue major disaster or emergency declarations (the latter provide considerably less federal assistance than the former), sets out eligibility criteria, and specifies the types of assistance the President may authorize. Executive Order 12148 (1979) delegates to FEMA most of the authority granted to the President under the Disaster Relief Act of 1974. Among the few authorities not delegated are those to: (1) declare emergencies or major disasters; (2) repair or replace federal facilities; (3) order the military to provide assistance; and (4) distribute food coupons and surplus commodities. The Stafford Act defines a major disaster in terms of specific “natural” catastrophes (hurricane, tornado, tsunami, earthquake, volcanic eruption, and others) and, “regardless of cause,” a fire, flood, or explosion. The explosions in New York City’s World Trade Center in 1993 and in Oklahoma City in 1995, for example, resulted in major disaster declarations Not all catastrophes result in Stafford Act assistance. The statute requires that the President, prior to issuing either an emergency or a major disaster declaration, determine that sufficient damage has occurred to warrant assistance “to supplement the efforts and available resources of states, local government, and disaster relief organizations ....”9 While the President has been granted considerable discretion in deciding whether to issue a declaration, the statute requires that state and local resources be overwhelmed before a disaster is declared.10 According to FEMA, 66 requests for major disaster declarations were received during FY1997. Of these requests, 49 resulted in major disaster declarations; two were declared as emergencies; and the remaining 15 did not result in any declaration.11 Table 3 lists examples of recent especially destructive and costly events declared to be major disasters. 8 P.L.93-288, the Disaster Relief Act of 1974 (May 22, 1974; 88 Stat. 143-164), as amended by P.L. 100-707 (Nov. 23, 1988; 102 Stat. 4689-4711), 42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq. The Act was further amended by the 103rd Congress as follows: modification of hazard mitigation authority, P.L. 103-181 (Dec. 8, 1993; 107 Stat. 2054-2056) and transfer of civil defense authority, P.L. 103-337 (Oct. 5, 1994; 108 Stat. 2663) 9 Section 102(2) of the Stafford Act, 42 U.S.C. 5122. 10 “All requests for a declaration by the President that a major disaster exists shall be made by the Governor of the affected State. Such a request shall be based on a finding that the disaster is of such severity and magnitude that effective response is beyond the capabilities of the State and the affected local governments and that Federal assistance is necessary.” 18 U.S.C. 5170, 102 Stat. 4696. 11 U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency. Justification of Estimates, Fiscal Year 1999, (Washington: Feb. 1998), p. DR-4. CRS-10 Table 3. Stafford Act Obligations for Recent, Costly Major Disasters, as of July 1995 (dollars in millions) Date of occurrence FEMA contract no. Disaster name Amount obligated Sept. 17, 1989 841-844 Hurricane Hugo Oct. 17, 1989 845 Loma Prieta earthquake Aug. 24, 1992 955, 956 Hurricane Andrew $1,832 June - July, 1993 993-1001 Midwest floods $1,148 Jan. 17, 1994 1008 Northridge earthquake $6,076 July 3, 1994 1033-1035 Tropical Storm Alberto $437 Sept. 15, 1995 1067-1068 Hurricane Marilyn $500 Sept. 5, 1996 1134-1135 Hurricane Fran $542 Feb.-Mar. 1997 1173-1175 Dakota floods $514 $1,317 $844 Source: FEMA, Office of Congressional Affairs, funding data as of Dec. 31, 1997. Lesser catastrophes that overwhelm local and state governments may not result in major disaster declarations, but may still be catalysts for federal action. Broader, more inclusive language is used to define an “emergency” under the Stafford Act. The act lists no specific causal events; instead, an emergency is an event in which “Federal assistance is needed to supplement State and local efforts and capabilities to save lives and to protect property and public health and safety, or to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe in any part of the United States.”12 In 1995, damages associated with Hurricane Erin in Florida and the bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City resulted in emergency declarations.13 Types of Major Disaster Assistance Under the Stafford Act, federal agency heads may provide federal resources (personnel, equipment, and technical services) to assist the stricken area after the President has declared a major disaster. In addition, FEMA may provide grants for specific types of assistance. A summary list of key types of assistance that may be 12 13 Section 102(1) of the Stafford Act, 42 U.S.C. 5122. The bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah building on April 19, 1995, is significant from the perspective of the Stafford Act for two reasons. First, the emergency declaration (#3115-EM) initially issued was later revised as a major disaster declaration (#1048-DR). Second, the initial emergency declaration marked the first time that a President issued an emergency declaration without a request from the governor under authority of Section 501(b) of the Stafford Act (42 U.S.C. 5191). This provision authorizes the President to act unilaterally if “the primary responsibility for response rests with the United States.” CRS-11 provided is outlined below. Most of the assistance may be provided only under a major disaster declaration. Except where noted, this assistance is authorized by the Stafford Act. Beyond these measures, federal agencies other than FEMA provide aid to disaster victims and communities.14 Appendix A of this report lists significant federal disaster assistance programs currently available. The programs are listed by funding agency. Types of assistance available from federal agencies are discussed below. Human Services. Human services aid (formerly referred to as “Individual Assistance” programs) is given to individuals and families to help disaster victims with essential needs and to replace lost goods. The following types of assistance are provided by FEMA and other agencies. Disaster Housing Assistance (DHA). Authorized by Section 408 of the Stafford Act (42 U.S.C. 5174), the DHA assures disaster victims a safe place to live until repairs are completed on damaged residences.15 The basic forms of assistance include: money for rent payments, grants for essential home repair, and the provision of mobile homes, when necessary. Funds are provided for expenses that are not covered by insurance. Individual and Family Grants. The Individual and Family Grant (IFG) Program, authorized by Section 411 of the Stafford Act (42 U.S.C. 5178) is a federal/state cost-shared program. It provides funds for the necessary expenses and serious needs of disaster victims which cannot be met through other forms of disaster assistance or through insurance. In FY1998, maximum grants of $13,400 may be provided; historically, average grants approved ranged from $2,000 to $4,000. Assistance from the IFG can be used for housing, personal property, medical, dental, funeral, and transportation expenses, and for required flood insurance premiums. The state administers the IFG program and pays 25% throughout the grant amount; the federal government provides the remaining 75%. Small Business Administration Disaster Loans. The Small Business Administration (SBA) can make federally subsidized loans to repair or replace homes, personal property, or businesses which sustained damages not covered by insurance (15 U.S.C. 636(b)). Three types of disaster loans provided by SBA include: (1) home disaster loans, to homeowners and renters to repair or replace disaster-related damages to homes or personal property; (2) business physical disaster 14 For descriptions of other assistance programs see: U.S. Executive Office of the President and U.S. General Services Administration, 1997 Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance, (Washington: 1997), pp. 1308. and U.S. Congress, Senate Bipartisan Task Force on Funding Disaster Relief, Federal Disaster Assistance, S. Doc. 104-4 (Washington: GPO, Mar. 15, 1995), p. 194. 15 Prior to FY1996 FEMA referred to this program using the statutory title, “Temporary Housing Assistance.” For information on housing assistance, see: U.S. General Accounting Office, Guidance Needed for FEMA’s “Fast Track” Housing Assistance Process, GAO report RCED-98-1 (Washington: Oct. 17, 1997), p. 44. CRS-12 loans, to business owners to repair or replace disaster-damaged property, including inventory and supplies; and (3) economic injury disaster loans, which provide capital to small businesses and to small agricultural cooperatives to assist them through the disaster recovery period. Farm Service Agency (FSA) Loans. The U.S. Department of Agriculture can make loans of up to $500,000 for the repair or replacement of damaged farm and aquaculture property and supplies (7 U.S.C. 1961). Assistance is authorized after a presidential declaration of a major disaster or upon declaration by the Secretary of Agriculture. Loans are provided at a 4.5% interest rate for no more than 20 years for production (up to 80% of loss) and no more than 40 years for property (up to 100% of loss). Assistance is provided only to those without access to credit. Unemployment Assistance. Disaster unemployment assistance authorized by Section 410 of the Stafford Act (42 U.S.C. 5177) is administered through the U.S. Department of Labor. It is available for persons unemployed as a result of the disaster. The assistance cannot exceed compensation limits established by the state and continues to be provided until the individual is reemployed, but for not more than 26 weeks. Food commodities. Commodities may be made available at mass feeding locations and food coupons may be distributed to low-income households, as authorized by Section 412 of the Stafford Act (42 U.S.C. 5179). Emergency management regulations require that adequate stocks of food be ready and conveniently available in any area of the United States which suffers a major disaster or emergency. Legal Services. Legal services which include legal advice, counseling, and representation in non fee-generating cases may be provided to low-income individuals who require them as a result of a major disaster. Authorized by Section 415 of the Stafford Act, 42 U.S.C. 5182. Crisis Counseling. Counseling provided through the National Institute of Mental Health, may be available to individuals or groups coping with mental or emotional crises as a result of the disaster. Authorized by Section 416 of the Stafford Act, 42 U.S.C. 5183. Gifts and Bequests for Disaster Assistance. Other assistance may be provided from the Cora Brown Fund administered by FEMA, for needs of disaster victims which cannot be met through governmental or other organizational programs. Established by bequest; see regulations at 44 CFR 206.181. Infrastructure Assistance. The infrastructure program provides funds to units of government and to certain non-profit organizations to meet immediate needs of communities and to rebuild disaster stricken areas. In addition to Stafford Act authority, legislation authorizes the Department of Transportation to provide funds for the repair of damaged highways. CRS-13 Grants. Seven program areas have been established by FEMA to administer infrastructure assistance authorized in Title IV of the Stafford Act. These include: (1) Debris removal (Category A); (2) Protective measures (Category B); (3) Roads and bridges (Category C); (4) Water control facilities (Category D); (5) Public buildings (Category E); (6) Public utilities (Category F); and (7) Other (Category G). Funding and technical assistance is provided to state and local governments and certain private nonprofit institutions for the repair or replacement of facilities damaged or destroyed by the disaster. This assistance is generally in the form of a grant for not less than 75% of the cost of restoration (and hazard mitigation required by FEMA) of facilities, including schools. FEMA also can provide assistance for emergency protective measures, debris removal, emergency communications, and emergency public transportation. Authorized in Sections 403, 406, and 407 of the Stafford Act, 42 U.S.C. 5170b, 5172, and 5173. Federal Aid to Highways. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration can provide financial and technical assistance for repair or reconstruction of highways on the federal aid system, forest highways, park roads and trails, and other similar projects damaged by the disaster. Authorized by 23 U.S.C. 125. Hazard Mitigation. Hazard Mitigation Planning. Section 409 of the Stafford Act (42 U.S.C. 5176) requires that state and local governments evaluate the hazards within the disaster area, and take appropriate steps to mitigate those hazards. Federal regulations require a hazard mitigation plan to be developed 180 days after the disaster declaration. Hazard Mitigation Grant Program. Section 404 of the Stafford Act (42 U.S.C. 5170c) established a program to fund mitigation measures after a disaster. FEMA can contribute 75% of the cost of eligible mitigation measures. Total funding under the current program is 15% of the estimated grants for individual assistance programs and public assistance projects. Under this program, mitigation measures must be cost-effective and must be consistent with mitigation plans required under Section 409 of the Stafford Act. The state is the grantee of the program and therefore has the responsibility to solicit projects, establish guidelines, and review proposals prior to review and approval by FEMA. Before July 1997, mitigation grants were provided only to counties eligible for specified Stafford Act assistance. Since then, all areas within a state that has received a disaster declaration are eligible for hazard mitigation grants.16 Sequence of Events 16 U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency, “Disaster Assistance; Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (Subpart N),” Federal Register, vol. 62, no. 129, July 7, 1997, p. 36289. CRS-14 When a catastrophe strikes, the Governor of the affected state17 may ask the President to declare that an emergency or major disaster exists if, in his or her judgment, state and local resources are inadequate. FEMA staff from the regional office, often accompanied by state and local officials, survey the area to assess the costs and the extent of damages. The findings of the survey team, along with an assessment of non-federal capabilities, are forwarded from the regional office to FEMA headquarters. The Director of FEMA evaluates the reports and recommends to the President whether an emergency or a major disaster declaration, if any, should be issued. The President then decides whether to issue a declaration for each state affected by the catastrophe.18 Cost Share Requirements and Waivers Before assistance is committed, federal and state officials must agree upon the terms of the contract. A FEMA official (generally the regional director) and the governor of the affected state (or the designated state representative) negotiate and sign a “FEMA/State Agreement,” which specifies the cost-share arrangements for public assistance, and binds both parties to mutual understandings. As part of the agreement, the governor provides assurances that the cost-sharing requirements under the Stafford Act will be met. Since the eruption of Mt. St. Helens in 1980, eligible public assistance has generally been provided by federal, state, and local governments. The federal government generally contributes 75% of eligible costs; state and local government, 25%. Eligible costs are those associated with the repair of public or nonprofit structures, debris removal, and essential assistance to save lives and protect property.19 The President may waive, and has waived, some or all of the cost-sharing required for public assistance after particularly destructive catastrophes.20 The match requirement for human services (which the Stafford Act sets at 25% of eligible costs) cannot be waived, except for insular areas.21 As of August 28, 1997, according to 17 Under the Stafford Act, the District of Columbia and the insular areas are defined as states. 18 For more information on the declaration process see: U.S. General Accounting Office, Disaster Assistance, Information on Declarations for Urban and Rural Areas, GAO report RCED-95-242 (Washington: Sept. 1995), p. 48. 19 See attachment to FEMA/State Agreement dated May 23, 1980 in Lacy E. Suiter, letter to Daniel P. Mulhollan, Director of CRS, Oct. 2, 1997, Government Division files maintained by the author. Much of the information on cost-share waivers is contained in this letter and its attachments. Hereafter cited as Lacy Suiter Letter to CRS. 20 The Stafford Act, as amended in 1988 (P.L. 100-707), specifies that the minimum federal share of public assistance for eligible activities “shall be not less than 75 percent of the eligible cost of such assistance.” See Sections 403(b) and (c)(4), 406(b), 407(d). For emergency declarations, “the federal share for assistance provided under this title shall be equal to not less than 75 percent of the eligible costs.” See Section 503(a), 42 U.S.C. 5193. 21 “The administering authority of any department or agency, in its discretion, may (i) waive any requirement for matching funds otherwise required by law to be provided by the (continued...) CRS-15 FEMA, waivers had been issued in 32 disaster declarations since 1985. Information on these waivers, including the additional federal cost incurred for granting the waivers, is provided below in Table 4. For most disasters, a threshold of $64 per capita (statewide) has been used to determine when a waiver may be granted. That is, if the damages from a declared disaster in a state exceed $64 multiplied by the entire state population, a waiver has been considered. Once that threshold has been reached, FEMA has adjusted the costshare requirements as noted in Table 4. For the Midwest floods of 1993, however, FEMA used a different criterion. After those floods FEMA “determined that when the total estimated damage [public and private] is greater than 0.1 percent of the country’s gross domestic product, a cost-share was warranted.”22 An exception was also made for the state of Minnesota after flooding occurred (see contract #1175 in Table 4) “even though the state did not attain the $64 per capita threshold.”23 While the use of different thresholds has evoked little discussion, Congress may wish to examine how FEMA has exercised its discretion to set thresholds. The issue of cost share adjustments is addressed, to some degree, in S. 1007 and H.R. 2446. The bills would amend section 406 of the Stafford Act by allowing reimbursement of “up to 90%” of net eligible costs “in the aftermath of major disasters which cause catastrophic losses.” The bills do not define such losses. The bills also would encourage hazard mitigation efforts. The cost share would increase “up to 90%” for state and local governments that implement hazard mitigation projects. On the other hand, the bills would reduce federal assistance to as little as 50% for states and localities that do not improve claims processing associated with this assistance. Regulatory changes are also in process. FEMA is drafting regulations “to raise the $64 threshold to current dollars.”24 21 (...continued) Insular Area involved. . . .” (48 U.S.C. 1469a(d)) 22 Lacy Suiter Letter to CRS, p. 2. According to one newswire report, the use of the $64 threshold evoked considerable outcry from state officials. See: Associated Press, “Governors Unhappy with Flood Aid Formula,” Chicago Tribune, Sept. 3, 1993, p. 6. 23 Ibid. 24 Ibid. CRS-16 Table 4. Major Disaster Declarations with Cost Share Adjustments, November 1985 - August 1997 (by calendar year of declaration, current dollars) Jurisdiction Contract Year Type of disaster Federal/state cost share adjustmentsa Additional cost West Virginia #753 1985 storms, flooding PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 100% $21,772,268 U.S. Virgin Islands #841 1989 Hurricane Hugo IFG & PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 100% $38,362,728 Puerto Rico #842 1989 Hurricane Hugo PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 100% $11,194,908 South Carolina #843 1989 Hurricane Hugo PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 100% $50,563,436 American Samoa #855 1990 Hurricane Ofa PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 90/10 $52,202 Republic of Palau #882 1990 Typhoon Mike IFG - 100%; PA - 90/10 $106,718 Marshall Islands #925 1992 Typhoon Zelda PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 90/10 $237,128 American Samoa #927 1992 Hurricane Val IFG - 100%; PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 90/10 Marshall Islands #932 1992 Tropical Storm Axel PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 90/10 $193,470 Florida #955 1992 Hurricane Andrew PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 100% $151,655,185 Louisiana #956 1992 Hurricane Andrew PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 100% $10,895,067 Guam #957 1992 Typhoon Omar PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 95/5 $4,630,696 Hawaii #961 1992 Hurricane Iniki PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 100% $34,359,427 Marshall Islands #971 1993 Typhoon Gay PA - 75/25 up to $10 per capita; then 90/10 $50,748 Minnesota #993 1993 Midwest floods EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $4,687,500 Wisconsin #994 1993 Midwest floods EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $3,262,500 Missouri #995 1993 Midwest floods EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $20,724,068 $5,015,800 CRS-17 Jurisdiction Contract Year Type of disaster Federal/state cost share adjustmentsa Iowa #996 1993 Midwest floods EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $17,277,527 Illinois #997 1993 Midwest floods EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $20,010,000 Nebraska #998 1993 Midwest floods EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $8,403,795 South Dakota #999 1993 Midwest floods EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $1,627,604 Kansas #1000 1993 Midwest floods EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $7,572,296 North Dakota #1001 1993 Midwest floods EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $1,277,550 California #1008 1994 Northridge earthquake EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $811,143,999 Georgia #1033 1994 Tropical Storm Alberto EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA costs $54,073,035 Alaska #1039 1994 storms and flooding PA - 85/15 Virgin Islands #1067 1995 Hurricane Marilyn EA - 100%; 90/10 all other grants $19,695,000 North Carolina #1134 1996 Hurricane Fran EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA grants $40,800,000 Puerto Rico #1136 1996 Hurricane Fran EA - 100%; 90/10 all other PA grants $8,662,500 South Dakota #1173 1997 flooding, storms, rain, ice EA - 100%; PA - 75/25 other PA grants, but see noteb $2,950,000 North Dakota #1174 1997 flooding, storms, rain, ice EA - 100%; PA - 90/10 other PA grants, but see noteb $25,950,000 Minnesota #1175 1997 flooding, storms, rain, ice EA - 100%; PA - 90/10 other PA grants (6 counties), see noteb $29,700,000 Federal costs Additional cost $5,208,659 $1,412,115,814 Source: FEMA/State Agreement; May 23, 1980, Lacy Suiter Letter to CRS, Oct. 2, 1997. a PA (public assistance) - Section 406, 42 U.S.C. 5172; IFG (individual and family grants) - Section 411, 42 U.S.C. 5178 [unless otherwise noted, all IFG cost shares are 75/25]; EA (essential assistance) - Section 403, 42 U.S.C. 5170b. b Public assistance for debris removal and protective measures provided at 100% of eligible costs. CRS-18 Funding Funds are appropriated for Stafford Act assistance on a “no-year” basis; that is, the funds remain available indefinitely and do not have to be spent in any given fiscal year. Table 5 identifies requested appropriations and outlays from the fund. The balance in the fund fluctuates continually as contracts between FEMA and grantees are paid. At the end of calendar year 1997, $3.8 billion was available in the Fund. According to one FEMA budget officer, as of February 5, 1998, the agency projected that roughly $980 million would remain in the Fund through FY1998 assuming that no significant new costs would be incurred.25 According to one news source, additional FY1998 supplemental appropriations totaling $641.6 million disaster relief is being considered in light of the flooding in California and the ice storm that affected Maine in February, 1998.26 During debate on the FY1997 and FY1998 appropriations for FEMA, the Senate urged FEMA to take action to reduce disaster relief costs. In the debate on the FY1998 appropriations, the Senate Appropriations Committee reported that members continue “to be deeply troubled by the escalating cost of FEMA disaster relief . . . [and] there remains little accountability for expenditures, inadequate financial controls, and far too much awarded to low-priority projects such as the refurbishment of golf courses and stadiums.”27 The full Senate-approved language in S. 1034, prohibiting the expenditure of FEMA disaster relief funds for certain projects, is as follows: Provided, That none of the funds appropriated for the Federal Emergency Management Agency may be used to perform repair, replacement, reconstruction, or restoration activities with respect to (1) trees and other natural features belonging to State and local governments that are located within parks and recreational facilities, as well as on the grounds of other publicly-owned property; (2) parks, recreational areas, marinas, golf courses, stadiums, arenas or other similar facilities which generate any portion of their operational revenue through user fees, rents, admission charges, or similar fees; or (3) beaches. Conferees deleted this provision from the final text of the legislation, but noted that they “support efforts to rein in disaster relief expenditures ... [and] urge the committees of jurisdiction to take swift action to consider the proposed Stafford Act 25 Telephone conversation with budget office, Feb. 5, 1998. 26 National Journal's CongressDaily, Issue dates: February 23, and March 4, 1998. For information on the FY1998 supplemental see: U.S. Library of Congress, Congressional Research Service, Supplemental Appropriations and Rescissions for FY1998, by Larry Nowels, Coordinator, CRS Report 98-123 F (Washington: Feb. 13, 1998), p. 12. 27 U.S. Congress, Senate Committee on Appropriations, Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, and Independent Agencies Appropriations Bill, 1998, report to accompany S. 1034, 105th Cong., 1st sess., S. Rept. 105-53 (Washington: GPO, 1997), p. 73. CRS-19 amendments, including holding hearings at the earliest possible time.”28 President signed H.R. 2158 into law (P.L. 105-65) on October 27, 1997. The Options to reduce federal disaster relief expenditures have been considered by Congress for years. During the 103rd Congress, both the House and Senate established bipartisan task forces to collect information and consider alternatives on federal disaster relief costs. The House Bipartisan Task Force on Disasters completed a report that contained a range of recommendations on sharing and reducing disaster costs.29 The Senate published a report that provided relatively comprehensive historical information for fiscal years 1977-1993 on federal disaster expenditures and summarized existing policies.30 While both the House and Senate reports established baseline information and listed possible alternatives, no permanent legislation resulted during the 103rd or the 104th Congresses. In 1996, the General Accounting Office reviewed the Stafford Act public assistance program and recommended that FEMA’s criteria be clarified and that auditing procedures be improved. The report also included recommendations provided by FEMA’s regional offices and state emergency management officials.31 FEMA has begun action on one aspect of cost control, a determination of the conformance of projects with building code standards. The point of contention is whether eligible costs should be based on codes adopted by communities on, or before, the disaster declaration date.32 The intent is to clarify Stafford Act language (42 U.S.C. 5172(e)(1)) that limits federal costs to reconstructing a facility pursuant to “current” building codes and standards. According to a FEMA official, the final rule is expected to be published in 1998. This issue is also addressed in the legislation pending before the 105th Congress.33 28 U.S. Congress, Conference Committees, 1997, Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, and Independent Agencies Appropriations Bill, 1998, conference report to accompany H.R. 2158, H.Rept. 105-297, 105th Cong., 1 st sess. (Washington: GPO, 1997). 29 U.S. Congress, House Bipartisan Task Force on Disasters, Report, (Washington: Dec. 14, 1994), p. 23. 30 Senate Bipartisan Task Force on Funding Disaster Relief, Federal Disaster Assistance, pp. 5-15. 31 U.S. General Accounting Office, Disaster Assistance: Improvements Needed in Determining Eligibility for Public Assistance, GAO report RCED-96-113 (Washington: May 23, 1996), p. 68. 32 U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency, “Disaster Assistance; Restoration of Damaged Facilities,” Federal Register, vol. 61, Oct. 25, 1996, pp. 55262-63. 33 Section 7(d) of S. 1007 and section 7(4) of H.R. 2446. CRS-20 Table 5. Disaster Relief Fund: Requests, Appropriations, and Outlays, FY1974-FY1998 (thousands of dollars) a Appropriations Total FY Outlays Request Original Supplemental Nominal $ Constant 1997 $ Nominal $ Constant 1997 $ 1974 $100,000 $200,000 $232,600 $432,600 $1,411,419 $250,085 $815,938 1975 $100,000 $150,000 $50,000 $200,000 $580,552 $205,858 $597,556 1976 $187,500 $187,500 $0 $187,500 $505,255 $362,458 $976,712 1977 $100,000 $100,000 $200,000 $300,000 $751,315 $294,016 $736,329 1978 $150,000 $115,000 $300,000 $415,000 $972,352 $461,007 $1,080,148 1979 $200,000 $200,000 $194,000 $394,000 $854,849 $276,992 $600,981 1980 $193,600 $193,600 $870,000 $1,063,600 $2,080,595 $573,760 $1,122,379 1981 $375,570 $358,449 $0 $358,449 $633,638 $400,590 $708,132 1982 $400,000 $301,694 $0 $301,694 $498,256 $115,439 $190,651 1983 $325,000 $130,000 $0 $130,000 $203,954 $201,905 $316,763 1984 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $243,014 $365,490 1985 $100,000 $100,000 $0 $100,000 $144,363 $191,683 $276,719 $350,000 $491,228 $335,444 $470,799 $120,000 $161,921 $219,112 $295,658 $120,000 $156,883 $186,901 $244,347 $1,208,000 $1,532,217 $140,316 $177,976 $1,248,450 $1,514,925 $1,332,837 $1,617,324 $0 $0 $551,795 $643,868 1986 $194,000 $100,000 1987 $100,000 $120,000 1988 $125,000 $120,000 b $250,000 c $0 d $0 e 1989 $200,000 $100,000 $1,108,000 1990 $270,000 $98,450 $1,150,000 1991 $270,000 $0 $0 f CRS-21 a Appropriations Total FY Original Supplemental $184,459 $185,000 $4,136,000 $292,095 i $292,095 $2,000,000 $292,000 g 1992 1993 1994 Request k $1,154,000 Nominal $ Constant 1997 $ Nominal $ Constant 1997 $ h $4,321,000 $4,940,544 $902,175 $1,031,529 j $2,292,095 $2,556,145 $2,276,216 $2,538,436 l $4,709,000 $5,001,000 $5,457,819 $3,743,210 $4,085,136 $3,275,000 $3,595,000 $3,805,844 $2,116,000 $2,240,102 $2,275,000 $2,497,000 $2,560,500 $2,232,000 $2,288,761 $4,620,000 $4,064,039 $2,551,000 p $2,244,018 $3,252,000 p $2,842,657 $2,642,000 p 1995 $320,000 $320,000 m 1996 $320,000 $222,000 m 1997 $320,000 o $1,320,000 Outlays o $3,300,000 0 $320 $280 p NA NA NA NA p $5,206,108 $24,049,600 $29,255,708 $35,878,894 1998 $2,708,000 $320 1999 $2,566,230 Total $11,255,454 o$ n $26,057,813 $2,252,344 $30,760,751 Source: U.S. President Annual Budget Documents, appropriations legislation. a Administration request column generally represents first budget request submitted each year by the administration and does not include amended requests or supplemental requests. However, note footnotes for 1992 and 1994. Total appropriations column does not include rescissions unless they have been incorporated in appropriations acts. Includes total amount appropriated regardless of emergency requirement designation under Budget Enforcement Act. b According to FEMA, in FY1986 a sequester of $4.3 million was applied. c In February 1987, a total of $57,475,000 was rescinded and transferred from the Disaster Relief Fund to the Emergency Food and Shelter Program account (P.L. 100-6). That amount was returned to the Disaster Relief Fund that same year in supplemental appropriations legislation enacted in July 1987 (P.L. 100-71). d Public Law 100-202, the Continuing Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 1988, appropriated $120 million for disaster relief. According to information provided by FEMA, the original appropriation for that fiscal year was $125 million, but $5 million was transferred, pursuant to instructions, to the Department of Labor for “low income agriculture workers.” e Funds included in P.L. 101-100, a continuing appropriations bill enacted after Hurricane Hugo struck in September 1989. According to FEMA, this amount was “referred to as a <supplemental’ but was an increase in the original appropriation during a continuing resolution.” f P.L. 101-130, enacted after the Loma Prieta earthquake, appropriated $1.1 billion. In addition, $50 million was appropriated in P.L. 101-302, dire emergency supplemental appropriations legislation. Also, according to FEMA, total appropriation includes $2.5 million transfer from President’s Unanticipated Needs Fund. g Does not include budget amendment of $90 million submitted by the administration after action taken by House Appropriations Committee. h Includes $185 million original appropriation; $943 million dire emergency supplemental in P.L. 102-229, enacted in the fall of 1991 after Hurricane Bob; $300 million after the Los Angeles riots and flooding in Chicago (spring of 1992) in P.L. 102-302; and $2.893 billion in P.L. 102-368 after Hurricanes Andrew and Iniki, Typhoon Omar, and other disasters. i Of the total appropriated, no more than $95,000 was permitted to be transferred to FEMA’s direct loan account for administrative expenses and subsidies. j Includes $2 billion supplemental approved after the Midwest floods of 1993 (P.L. 103-75). k The original FY1994 budget request was $292 million. On July 29, 1993, a supplemental request of $862 million was sent by the President to Congress. The message accompanying the request for the supplemental funds noted: “This proposal would provide additional funds for FEMA’s Disaster Relief Fund to cover the projected unfunded emergency requirements of disasters already declared, and expected to be declared, by September 30, 1993.” l Supplemental appropriation enacted following the Northridge earthquake in Los Angeles (P.L. 103-211). m Additional supplemental appropriation for Northridge earthquake costs (P.L. 104-19), with half ($3.275 billion) appropriated to a contingency fund for FY1996. However, $1 billion of the contingency fund was rescinded in the FY1996 omnibus appropriations legislation, P.L. 104-134. Note that in that same legislation another $7 million was also appropriated to other FEMA accounts for costs associated with the bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City. n The FY1998 budget appendix indicates a transfer of $104 million from the fund in FY1996. o In the FY1997 appropriations act (P.L. 104-204), $1 billion rescinded in FY1996 money (P.L. 104-134) was restored, and $320 million in new funds was appropriated. Supplemental appropriations of $3.3 billion were approved in P.L. 105-18 after flooding in the Dakotas and Minnesota and storms in other states were declared major disasters. The legislation specified, however, that of the total, $2.3 billion was to be available in FY1998 only when FEMA submitted a cost control report to Congress. This requirement was met, and the funding was made available in FY1998. p The FY1999 request consists of $307,745,000 for the Disaster Relief Fund and an additional $2,258,485,000 to be available when the President and the Congress designate the funds as an emergency requirement under the Balanced Budget Act of 1985, as amended. According to a FEMA budget officer contacted Feb. 5, 1998, the Disaster Relief Fund contained $3.8 billion in unobligated funds at year-end, CY1997. As of that date, FEMA estimates (assuming no significant additional disaster costs are incurred during the current fiscal year) that roughly $980 million will be available in the Fund at the end of FY1998. q Current estimates. CRS-23 Appendix A. Significant Federal Disaster Relief Programs Agency Program Summary of Benefits Department of Agriculture Noninsured Assistance Program Direct payments for noninsurable producers who suffer significant losses Federal Crop Insurance Program Program is designed to protect crop producers from unavoidable disasters Emergency Conservation Program Grants for rehabilitating farmland damaged by disasters FSA Emergency Disaster Loans Loans to help farmers repair or replace property and to assist in meeting operational costs Emergency Watershed Protection Grants and technical assistance to protect lives and property in watershed areas threatened by disasters Disaster Food Distribution Program Provision of food commodities for mass feeding of victims Food Stamp Program—Emergency Issuance Expedited food stamp assistance to victims Department of Defense Humanitarian Assistance Mass shelter, feeding, and care Department of Energy Radiological Emergency Assistance Technical assistance after radioactive materials incidents Department of Health and Human Services Disaster Services to the Elderly Reimbursements to states for assistance provided to the elderly (up to $50,000 per state per disaster) Department of Housing and Urban Development Mortgage Insurance—Homes for Disaster Victims Insured loans for the purchase of single-family housing by disaster victims Department of the Interior Fire Suppression and Emergency Rehabilitation of Indian Lands Technical assistance to suppress fires on Indian lands and some rehabilitation assistance Department of Justice Emergency Law Enforcement Provides funds and technical assistance to aid communities faced with law enforcement emergencies Department of Labor Unemployment Assistance Unemployment benefits or reemployment assistance to victims unemployed due to a disaster Department of the Treasury Tax Information and Education Provision of tax-related information to victims Department of Transportation Highway Construction, Emergency Relief Grants for the repair and reconstruction of federal-aid highways damaged by disasters Department of Veterans Affairs Adjustments to Federal Loans Counseling and loan assistance for property owners with veterans’ loans CRS-24 Agency Program Summary of Benefits Army Corps of Engineers Flood Control Works and Repair and rehabilitation of flood Federal Emergency Management Agency Fire Suppression Assistance Grants for firefighting assistance to prevent a fire from becoming a major disaster Planning Grants Grants provided to help states update disaster preparedness plans Debris Removal Grants for the removal of debris from public and private property Emergency Protective Measures Provision of emergency measures (such as search and rescue, protection of property from further damage) Public Transportation Provision of emergency public transportation services Crisis Counseling Assistance and Training Provision of professional counseling services to disaster victims Temporary Housing Provision of temporary housing through grants, repair assistance, or mobile homes Cora Brown Fund Assistance Grants for assistance not provided by public or private relief agencies CRS-25 Appendix B. Major Disaster and Emergency Declarations and Number of States Affected, 1975-1997 Calendar year Number of declarations Number of Statesa 1975 7 7 1976 35 27 1977 52 37 1978 25 25 1979 42 33 1980 29 22 1981 15 13 1982 26 20 1983 22 15 1984 34 28 1985 27 19 1986 28 22 1987 24 20 1988 11 10 1989 31 24 1990 38 28 1991 43 31 1992 47 30 1993 53 40 1994 37 27 1995 33 24 1996 70 37 1997 40 27 a Represents the number of states (and territories) in which at least one disaster occurred during the calendar year. Source: FEMA. CRS-26 Appendix C. FEMA Major Disaster Assistance, by State, Calendar Years 1974-1997 CRS-27 Table C. FEMA Major Disaster Assistance, by State, 1974-1997 (dollars in thousands, constant 1997) State Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware District of Col. Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland * Massachusetts Michigan No. 25 12 9 20 37 4 8 4 3 24 15 10 7 25 15 15 10 18 27 13 10 9 12 Total funding $684,086 $162,031 $272,435 $116,097 $9,889,415 $59,745 $98,666 $14,837 $8,034 $2,367,829 $529,314 $341,899 $165,695 $813,406 $149,135 $357,213 $135,822 $464,452 $525,612 $86,933 $77,260 $268,276 $159,637 Median allocation to state $7,174 $7,227 $22,495 $3,431 $22,593 $11,973 $8,546 $3,503 $3,056 $11,078 $4,442 $4,957 $8,711 $8,536 $5,685 $3,562 $4,018 $8,001 $5,507 $3,856 $4,448 $23,302 $9,776 Least costly incident in state Type of disaster Year FEMA $ tornadoes, storms, flooding 1981 $723 freeze 1974 $1,684 storms, wind, rain 1984 $1,158 storms and tornadoes 1980 $249 fire 1988 $810 storms and flooding 1982 $3,238 storms and tornadoes 1979 $2,066 storms and flooding 1992 $1,334 blizzard 1996 $1,361 storms and flooding 1979 $820 freeze 1977 $578 storms and flooding 1974 $196 ice and flooding 1984 $347 tornadoes 1974 $452 tornadoes 1986 $16 tornadoes, rain, wind 1988 $1,287 storms and flooding 1974 $951 sewer explosion 1981 $146 storms and tornadoes 1989 $816 flooding and ice jams 1994 $1,037 Tropical Storm Fran 1996 $3,256 fire 1981 $4,015 storms and flooding 1982 $192 Most costly incident in state Type of disaster Year FEMA $ Hurricane Frederic storms and flooding flooding tornadoes Northridge earthquake storms, flooding, landslides Hurricane Gloria ice storms and flooding storms and winds Hurricane Andrew Tropical Storm Alberto Hurricane Iniki Teton dam collapse storms and flooding tornadoes storms and flooding flooding and storms storms and flooding Hurricane Andrew storms and flooding storms, tornadoes, flooding flooding storms and flooding 1979 1994 1993 1997 1994 1976 1985 1994 1989 1992 1994 1992 1976 1993 1974 1993 1993 1977 1992 1987 1979 1978 1986 * Maryland received a major disaster declaration but no funding from FEMA for storms and flooding in 1985, according to data provided by FEMA May 1996. $407,897 $77,911 $129,184 $27,475 $6,631,212 $32,562 $24,478 $6,497 $3,617 $1,924,526 $428,025 $284,871 $101,601 $280,169 $37,142 $281,217 $99,320 $174,777 $169,680 $20,331 $22,411 $86,522 $39,963 CRS-28 State No. Total funding Minnesota 19 $426,890 Mississippi 21 $332,405 Missouri 17 $475,290 Montana 8 $43,659 Nebraska 14 $260,563 Nevada 4 $39,088 New Hampshire 9 $26,503 New Jersey 10 $163,933 New Mexico 8 $19,288 New York 23 $664,633 North Carolina 15 $687,020 North Dakota 14 $408,644 Ohio 16 $211,851 Oklahoma 16 $147,905 Oregon 9 $129,575 Pennsylvania 18 $816,426 Rhode Island 4 $23,930 South Carolina 4 $510,377 South Dakota 11 $159,778 Tennessee 17 $170,683 Texas 40 $691,528 Utah 4 $83,683 Vermont 11 $58,256 Virginia 16 $255,952 Washington 22 $466,083 West Virginia 14 $417,047 Wisconsin 17 $173,847 Wyoming 3 $7,814 $256,204,82 State total 716 0 Median allocation to state $10,289 $4,642 $7,957 $3,573 $8,917 $4,309 $2,601 $7,859 $1,997 $15,656 $5,944 $11,117 $5,162 $7,085 $3,943 $10,743 $5,201 $6,095 $6,866 $6,213 $4,581 $10,924 $4,042 $8,792 $8,169 $13,067 $3,031 $3,006 Least costly incident in state Type of disaster Year FEMA $ flooding 1975 $486 flooding 1997 $950 storms and tornadoes 1980 $268 storms, flooding, ice jams 1996 $1,849 storms and tornadoes 1984 $333 storms and flooding 1981 $330 high winds, tides, flooding 1978 $961 ice 1976 $742 winter storm 1997 $33 storms and flooding 1985 $564 storms and flooding 1979 $557 flooding 1982 $621 storms and flooding 1982 $692 tornadoes and flooding 1983 $711 flooding 1995 $2,048 storms and flooding 1986 $1,377 snow and ice 1978 $209 Hurricane Fran 1996 $4,183 tornadoes and flooding 1992 $1,341 storms and flooding 1982 $1,285 tornadoes 1984 $16 storms and flooding 1986 $1,232 ice storms, rain, flooding 1998 $1,019 storms, tornadoes 1993 $286 landslides and flooding 1986 $376 storms and flooding 1974 $84 tornadoes 1974 $357 storms and tornadoes 1979 $1,015 Most costly incident in state Type of disaster Year FEMA $ flooding, storms, snowmelt 1997 $169,545 winter storm 1994 $78,441 storms and flooding 1993 $312,291 storms and flooding 1978 $13,520 storms and flooding 1993 $68,586 flooding, mud/land slides 1996 $30,140 Fall n'easter rainstorm 1996 $6,245 storm, high tides, rain 1992 $65,172 flooding 1978 $5,536 storms and flooding 1996 $133,591 Hurricane Fran 1996 $492,358 flooding, storms, rain, ice 1997 $233,912 tornadoes 1974 $59,938 storms and flooding 1986 $27,017 winds, storms, flooding 1996 $90,335 storms and flooding 1997 $326,103 Hurricane Bob 1991 $13,319 Hurricane Hugo 1989 $494,004 flooding, storms, rain, ice 1997 $48,447 winter storm and flooding 1994 $68,008 storms and flooding 1994 $180,433 storms, landslides, flooding 1983 $60,603 storms, winds, flooding 1976 $22,100 storms and flooding 1977 $71,400 winds, storms, flooding 1996 $117,926 storms, landslides, flooding 1985 $165,611 storms, tornadoes, floods 1993 $78,773 storms, flooding, mudslides 1978 $3,794 CRS-29 State Insular areas Am. Samoa Guam Marianas Islands Marshall Islands Micronesia Pacific Islands Palau Puerto Rico Virgin Islands Subtotal Grand total No. Total funding Median allocation to state 6 6 $175,549 $385,189 $6,399 $41,987 9 $54,741 $3,367 9 $40,258 7 $63,362 2 $11,536 1 $7,818 11 $1,626,438 7 $922,756 58 $3,287,647 774 $28,908,129 $4,368 $2,195 $5,768 NA $82,330 $5,000 Least costly incident in state Type of disaster Year FEMA $ flooding and landslides Typhoon Roy 1979 1988 $669 $3,521 Typhoon Lynn 1987 $425 fire Typhoon Axel Typhoon Marie Typhoon Mike storms and flooding Tropical Storm Klaus 1987 1992 1996 1990 1986 1984 $241 $1,005 $2,360 $7,818 $2,405 $2,128 Most costly incident in state Type of disaster Year FEMA $ Hurricane Val Super Typhoon Paka 1991 1997 $115,264 $200,517 Typhoon Kim 1986 $18,128 seawaves and flooding Typhoon Owen Typhoon Pamela NA Hurricane Hugo Hurricane Marilyn 1979 1990 1996 $12,572 $31,813 $9,176 1989 1995 $687,488 $484,698 Source: Disaster funding information through Dec. 31, 1997, provided by the Office of Congressional Relations, FEMA, Feb. 1998. Constant dollar calculations based on quarterly data on chain weighted price indexes for state and local governments (total purchases consumption and investment) obtained from U.S. Dept. Of Commerce web site. CRS-30 Appendix D: FEMA Organization Chart Office of Congressional and Legislative Affairs Office of the Director James Lee Witt Office of Inspector General Deputy Director Office of Human Resources Management Chief of Staff Office of Emergency Information and Media Affairs Office of Equal Rights Office of Policy and Regional Operations Office of Financial Management Office of National Security Coordination Office of General Counsel Mitigation Directorate Response and Recovery Directorate Preparedness, Training, & Exercises Directorate Federal Insurance Administration United States Fire Administration Operations Support Directorate Information & Technical Services Directorate Regional Offices Regions I - X