The Center for American Progress conducted an analysis and found that from fiscal year 2011 to fiscal year 2013 the federal government spent a total of $136 billion on disaster relief (Figure 2). This adds up to an average of nearly $400 per household per year. While the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) provided the greatest portion of this funding, it only accounted for 41 percent of the total funds during this period.
Specifically, the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Disaster Relief Fund— arguably the most highly recognized source of federal assistance — accounts for only 25 percent of disaster funding provided by the federal government. In addition to the Disaster Recovery Fund, DHS also administers the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). In this article, in addition to DHS funding through FEMA, we will also discuss other federal funding sources and present techniques for combining all funding to achieve a desirable outcome without duplicating benefits, which is prohibited by the Office of Management and Budget.
FIGURE 1: HMA Application Process (FEMA).