For certain types of facilities, disaster assistance is the responsibility of a Federal agency other than FEMA. FEMA cannot provide assistance for the permanent repair of these facilities. This restriction applies even if the authorized agency decides not to provide assistance.
Other Federal Agencies with authority to provide disaster assistance include the following:
Federal Highway Administration (FHWA): assistance with damage to roads and bridges on the Federal-Aid Roads, including debris removal (see Federal-Aid Roads)
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers: repair of locally owned flood control works, such as dams, levees, floodwalls, and flood control channels (see Flood Control Works)
Natural Resources Conservation Service: repair of locally owned flood control works (see Flood Control Works), and removal of debris from stream channels, road culverts, and bridges
Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD): assistance with damaged properties of public housing authorities
FEMA cannot assist with permanent repairs to these facilities. However, in some cases when there is an emergency need, FEMA may fund emergency work if the authorized agency does not provide assistance and there is an immediate threat to public health and safety. For example, if the FHWA decides not to provide funds to clear debris from a Federal-Aid road, FEMA may fund the work in a limited way, on a case-by-case basis if there is an immediate threat to the public health and safety. Additionally, the coordination agreement between FEMA and HUD authorizes FEMA to fund disaster-related emergency work (but not permanent work) for disaster-damaged public housing authority properties.
Some Federal agencies own facilities but turn responsibility for operation and maintenance of these facilities over to local agencies. Examples include:
Roads constructed by the U.S. Forest Service
Reservoirs and water delivery systems constructed by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation
FEMA may provide assistance for the permanent repair of these facilities if the agreement between the Federal and local agencies specifically assigns responsibility for repairs to the local agency (see Legal Responsibility).
References: Sections 102(8) and 312 of the Stafford Act 44 CFR §206.226(a)
Public Housing Authorities, FEMA Policy 9523.7, dated April 14, 2003
Policy for Rehabilitation Assistance for Levees and Other Flood Control Works, FEMA Policy 9524.3, dated August 17, 1999
Eligibility for Permanent Repair and Replacement of Roads on Tribal Lands, FEMA Policy 9524.8, dated July 24, 2007
Public Assistance Guide, FEMA 322, pages 23-26, 28, 41, 44