Federal Disaster Assistance

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​​Federal Disaster Assistance

In a catastrophic disaster, and if the state'sPhoto of broken road governor requests, federal resources may be mobilized through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for federal assistance to state or local governments to pay part of the costs of rebuilding a community's damaged infrastructure. Federal assistance may include funding for debris removal, emergency protective measures and public services, repair or replacement of damaged public property, loans needed by communities for essential government functions and grants for public schools. FEMA coordinates with Cal OES to implement the Public Assistance (PA) Grant Program.

Photo of Public Assistance Process
  • ​​A joint Preliminary Damage Assessment is conducted by FEMA, Cal OES, and local partners to determine losses and recovery needs.

  • The Governor requests federal assistance.

  • The President approves the request for federal disaster funding or FEMA informs the governor it has been denied. This decision process could take a few hours or several weeks.

  • Cal OES holds Applicants' Briefings to provide a general overview of the Public Assistance (PA) program and describe the application process.

  • Applicants submit a Request for Public Assistance to Cal OES within 30 days of the date of the declaration.

  • Kick-off Meetings for eligible applicants are held with FEMA, Cal OES and the local partner to provide a more detailed review of the program and specific applicant needs.

  • The applicant submits a List of Projects to Cal OES.

  • Damaged sites are documented using a Subgrant Application (Project Worksheet).

  • Eligible Project Worksheets are obligated.

  • Funding is disbursed through Cal OES to the applicant as appropriate.

  • Applicants are required to provide quarterly status updates for each large project.

  • Applicants must submit time extension requests prior to the last approved project deadline.

  • Applicants complete construction of their projects and notify Cal OES

    • within 60 days of completion of EACH large progect

    • within 60 days of completion of ALL small projects

  • Cal OES and FEMA complete a closeout of the application.

​DR vs EM Declarations

The Stafford Act provides two types of declaratons, a Major Disaster Declaration (DR) and an Emergency Declaration (EM).

​DR Declaration

The President can declare a DR for any natural event the president believes has caused damage of such severity and magnitude that it is beyond the combined capabilities of State and local governments and disaster relief organizations to respond.  A DR provides a wide range of Federal assistance programs for individuals and public infrastructure, including funds for both emergency and permanent work.


​EM Declaration

 An EM can be declared for any occasion or instance the President determines Federal assistance is needed to supplement State and local efforts and capabilities to save lives, protect property and public health and safety, or to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe.  The amount of an EM declaration is capped at $5 million per single event unless continued assistance is need to alleviate the threat to lives, public health, and safety.


​Available Programs to Applicants

Debris Management

It is important for local governments to be familiar with state and federal eligibility and reasonable costs guidelines. Debris planning allows communities to be better prepared for a disaster by identifying debris collection and disposal sites, identifying potential debris contractors, and preparing debris removal contracts in advance of a disaster.


Provides subject matter expertise with regard to state and federal environmental and historic laws/regulations. It is the responsibility of the applicants to be familiar and comply with theses laws and regulatons.



Checklist for Reviewing Procurements AFTER Dec 26 2014https://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/Checklist for Procurements Associated with Disasters AFTER Dec 26 2014 - New Uniform Rules (11-14-16).pdfChecklist for Reviewing Procurements AFTER Dec 26 2014FEMA Information3/2/2017 7:12:15 PM
Checklist for Procurements BEFORE Dec 26 2014 IHE Hospitals and PNPshttps://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/Checklist for Procurements Associated with Disasters BEFORE Dec 26 2014 IHE Hospitals and PNPs.pdfChecklist for Procurements BEFORE Dec 26 2014 IHE Hospitals and PNPsFEMA Information3/2/2017 7:12:31 PM
FEMA Key Points Regarding Contracting Practiceshttps://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/FEMA Key Points Regarding Contracting Practices for Local and Tribal Governments.pdfFEMA Key Points Regarding Contracting PracticesFEMA Information6/17/2019 7:58:37 PM
Pricing Guide for Recipients and Subrecipientshttps://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/FEMA Pricing Guide for Recipients and Subrecipients.pdfPricing Guide for Recipients and SubrecipientsFEMA Information11/8/2019 10:06:32 PM
Procurement Guidance Under 2 CFR Part 200https://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/FEMA Procurement Guidance Under 2 CFR Part 200 Supplement to PDAT Field Manual.pdfProcurement Guidance Under 2 CFR Part 200FEMA Information6/17/2019 7:58:39 PM
Required Contract Clauses 2 C.F.R. 200.326 https://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/Required Contract Clauses 2 C.F.R. 200.326 and 2 C.F.R. Part 200 Appendix II 10 9 17.pdfRequired Contract Clauses 2 C.F.R. 200.326 FEMA Information6/17/2019 7:59:01 PM
Project Assurances for Federal Assistance (Cal OES 89) Fillable Formhttps://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/004-Cal OES 89 rev 02-16-17 fillable.pdfProject Assurances for Federal Assistance (Cal OES 89) Fillable FormRequired document for all federal disaster assistance grants, in a fillable document.Recovery Forms6/17/2019 7:59:09 PM
Signature Authority for California State Agencies (Cal OES 130SA)https://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/Cal OES 130SA.pdfSignature Authority for California State Agencies (Cal OES 130SA)Submitted by State Agencies when submitting an RFMAS or RPA Recovery Forms6/17/2019 7:58:27 PM
Reimbursement Request for Large Project Expenditureshttps://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/Cal OES Form 132 rev 03-27-17.pdfReimbursement Request for Large Project ExpendituresThis form should be filled out by applicants' for their large project expenditures.Recovery Forms6/17/2019 7:58:27 PM
List of Projects (Cal OES 95)https://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/Copy of Cal EMA 95 List Of Projects.xlsList of Projects (Cal OES 95)Used to submit an applicant's list of projects for all disaster eventsRecovery Forms1/24/2018 10:26:18 PM
Request for Public Assistance (RPA)https://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/Request for Public Assistance (RPA) - FEMA Form 009-0-49.pdfRequest for Public Assistance (RPA)Submitted by eligible applicants for Presidential declared disaster eventsRecovery Forms1/18/2019 10:49:40 PM
DUNS Number Requirementhttps://www.caloes.ca.gov/RecoverySite/Documents/DUNS Number Requirement.pdfDUNS Number RequirementInformation regarding the DUNS Number Requirement, and how to obtain a DUNS number for your organization.Recovery Information Sheets6/17/2019 7:58:34 PM

​Other Federal Agency Assistance




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