42 U.S.C.
United States Code, 2008 Edition
Title 42 - THE PUBLIC HEALTH AND WELFARE
CHAPTER 68 - DISASTER RELIEF
SUBCHAPTER IV - MAJOR DISASTER ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS
Sec. 5174 - Federal assistance to individuals and households
From the U.S. Government Printing Office, www.gpo.gov

§5174. Federal assistance to individuals and households

(a) In general

(1) Provision of assistance

In accordance with this section, the President, in consultation with the Governor of a State, may provide financial assistance, and, if necessary, direct services, to individuals and households in the State who, as a direct result of a major disaster, have necessary expenses and serious needs in cases in which the individuals and households are unable to meet such expenses or needs through other means.

(2) Relationship to other assistance

Under paragraph (1), an individual or household shall not be denied assistance under paragraph (1), (3), or (4) of subsection (c) of this section solely on the basis that the individual or household has not applied for or received any loan or other financial assistance from the Small Business Administration or any other Federal agency.

(b) Housing assistance

(1) Eligibility

The President may provide financial or other assistance under this section to individuals and households to respond to the disaster-related housing needs of individuals and households who are displaced from their predisaster primary residences or whose predisaster primary residences are rendered uninhabitable, or with respect to individuals with disabilities, rendered inaccessible or uninhabitable, as a result of damage caused by a major disaster.

(2) Determination of appropriate types of assistance

(A) In general

The President shall determine appropriate types of housing assistance to be provided under this section to individuals and households described in subsection (a)(1) of this section based on considerations of cost effectiveness, convenience to the individuals and households, and such other factors as the President may consider appropriate.

(B) Multiple types of assistance

One or more types of housing assistance may be made available under this section, based on the suitability and availability of the types of assistance, to meet the needs of individuals and households in the particular disaster situation.

(c) Types of housing assistance

(1) Temporary housing

(A) Financial assistance

(i) In general

The President may provide financial assistance to individuals or households to rent alternate housing accommodations, existing rental units, manufactured housing, recreational vehicles, or other readily fabricated dwellings. Such assistance may include the payment of the cost of utilities, excluding telephone service.

(ii) Amount

The amount of assistance under clause (i) shall be based on the fair market rent for the accommodation provided plus the cost of any transportation, utility hookups, security deposits, or unit installation not provided directly by the President.

(B) Direct assistance

(i) In general

The President may provide temporary housing units, acquired by purchase or lease, directly to individuals or households who, because of a lack of available housing resources, would be unable to make use of the assistance provided under subparagraph (A).

(ii) Period of assistance

The President may not provide direct assistance under clause (i) with respect to a major disaster after the end of the 18-month period beginning on the date of the declaration of the major disaster by the President, except that the President may extend that period if the President determines that due to extraordinary circumstances an extension would be in the public interest.

(iii) Collection of rental charges

After the end of the 18-month period referred to in clause (ii), the President may charge fair market rent for each temporary housing unit provided.

(2) Repairs

(A) In general

The President may provide financial assistance for—

(i) the repair of owner-occupied private residences, utilities, and residential infrastructure (such as a private access route) damaged by a major disaster to a safe and sanitary living or functioning condition; and

(ii) eligible hazard mitigation measures that reduce the likelihood of future damage to such residences, utilities, or infrastructure.

(B) Relationship to other assistance

A recipient of assistance provided under this paragraph shall not be required to show that the assistance can be met through other means, except insurance proceeds.

(3) Replacement

(A) In general

The President may provide financial assistance for the replacement of owner-occupied private residences damaged by a major disaster.

(B) Applicability of flood insurance requirement

With respect to assistance provided under this paragraph, the President may not waive any provision of Federal law requiring the purchase of flood insurance as a condition of the receipt of Federal disaster assistance.

(4) Permanent housing construction

The President may provide financial assistance or direct assistance to individuals or households to construct permanent or semi-permanent housing in insular areas outside the continental United States and in other locations in cases in which—

(A) no alternative housing resources are available; and

(B) the types of temporary housing assistance described in paragraph (1) are unavailable, infeasible, or not cost-effective.

(d) Terms and conditions relating to housing assistance

(1) Sites

(A) In general

Any readily fabricated dwelling provided under this section shall, whenever practicable, be located on a site that—

(i) is complete with utilities;

(ii) meets the physical accessibility requirements for individuals with disabilities; and

(iii) is provided by the State or local government, by the owner of the site, or by the occupant who was displaced by the major disaster.

(B) Sites provided by the President

A readily fabricated dwelling may be located on a site provided by the President if the President determines that such a site would be more economical or accessible.

(2) Disposal of units

(A) Sale to occupants

(i) In general

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a temporary housing unit purchased under this section by the President for the purpose of housing disaster victims may be sold directly to the individual or household who is occupying the unit if the individual or household lacks permanent housing.

(ii) Sale price

A sale of a temporary housing unit under clause (i) shall be at a price that is fair and equitable.

(iii) Deposit of proceeds

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the proceeds of a sale under clause (i) shall be deposited in the appropriate Disaster Relief Fund account.

(iv) Hazard and flood insurance

A sale of a temporary housing unit under clause (i) shall be made on the condition that the individual or household purchasing the housing unit agrees to obtain and maintain hazard and flood insurance on the housing unit.

(v) Use of GSA services

The President may use the services of the General Services Administration to accomplish a sale under clause (i).

(B) Other methods of disposal

If not disposed of under subparagraph (A), a temporary housing unit purchased under this section by the President for the purpose of housing disaster victims—

(i) may be sold to any person; or

(ii) may be sold, transferred, donated, or otherwise made available directly to a State or other governmental entity or to a voluntary organization for the sole purpose of providing temporary housing to disaster victims in major disasters and emergencies if, as a condition of the sale, transfer, or donation, the State, other governmental agency, or voluntary organization agrees—

(I) to comply with the nondiscrimination provisions of section 5151 of this title; and

(II) to obtain and maintain hazard and flood insurance on the housing unit.

(e) Financial assistance to address other needs

(1) Medical, dental, and funeral expenses

The President, in consultation with the Governor of a State, may provide financial assistance under this section to an individual or household in the State who is adversely affected by a major disaster to meet disaster-related medical, dental, and funeral expenses.

(2) Personal property, transportation, and other expenses

The President, in consultation with the Governor of a State, may provide financial assistance under this section to an individual or household described in paragraph (1) to address personal property, transportation, and other necessary expenses or serious needs resulting from the major disaster.

(f) State role

(1) Financial assistance to address other needs

(A) Grant to State

Subject to subsection (g) of this section, a Governor may request a grant from the President to provide financial assistance to individuals and households in the State under subsection (e) of this section.

(B) Administrative costs

A State that receives a grant under subparagraph (A) may expend not more than 5 percent of the amount of the grant for the administrative costs of providing financial assistance to individuals and households in the State under subsection (e) of this section.

(2) Access to records

In providing assistance to individuals and households under this section, the President shall provide for the substantial and ongoing involvement of the States in which the individuals and households are located, including by providing to the States access to the electronic records of individuals and households receiving assistance under this section in order for the States to make available any additional State and local assistance to the individuals and households.

(g) Cost sharing

(1) Federal share

Except as provided in paragraph (2), the Federal share of the costs eligible to be paid using assistance provided under this section shall be 100 percent.

(2) Financial assistance to address other needs

In the case of financial assistance provided under subsection (e) of this section—

(A) the Federal share shall be 75 percent; and

(B) the non-Federal share shall be paid from funds made available by the State.

(h) Maximum amount of assistance

(1) In general

No individual or household shall receive financial assistance greater than $25,000 under this section with respect to a single major disaster.

(2) Adjustment of limit

The limit established under paragraph (1) shall be adjusted annually to reflect changes in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers published by the Department of Labor.

(i) Verification measures

In carrying out this section, the President shall develop a system, including an electronic database, that shall allow the President, or the designee of the President, to—

(1) verify the identity and address of recipients of assistance under this section to provide reasonable assurance that payments are made only to an individual or household that is eligible for such assistance;

(2) minimize the risk of making duplicative payments or payments for fraudulent claims under this section;

(3) collect any duplicate payment on a claim under this section, or reduce the amount of subsequent payments to offset the amount of any such duplicate payment;

(4) provide instructions to recipients of assistance under this section regarding the proper use of any such assistance, regardless of how such assistance is distributed; and

(5) conduct an expedited and simplified review and appeal process for an individual or household whose application for assistance under this section is denied.

(j) Rules and regulations

The President shall prescribe rules and regulations to carry out this section, including criteria, standards, and procedures for determining eligibility for assistance.

(Pub. L. 93–288, title IV, §408, as added Pub. L. 100–707, title I, §106(d), Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4702; amended Pub. L. 106–390, title II, §206(a), Oct. 30, 2000, 114 Stat. 1566; Pub. L. 109–295, title VI, §§685, 686, 689(c), 689d, 696(c), Oct. 4, 2006, 120 Stat. 1447–1449, 1452, 1461.)

Prior Provisions

A prior section 5174, Pub. L. 93–288, title IV, §404, May 22, 1974, 88 Stat. 154, related to temporary housing assistance, prior to repeal by Pub. L. 100–707, §106(d).

A prior section 408 of Pub. L. 93–288 was classified to section 5178 of this title and to a note set out under section 5178 of this title prior to repeal by Pub. L. 100–707.

Amendments

2006—Subsec. (b)(1). Pub. L. 109–295, §689(c)(1), inserted “, or with respect to individuals with disabilities, rendered inaccessible or uninhabitable,” after “uninhabitable”.

Subsec. (c)(1)(A)(i). Pub. L. 109–295, §689d(1), inserted at end “Such assistance may include the payment of the cost of utilities, excluding telephone service.”

Subsec. (c)(1)(A)(ii). Pub. L. 109–295, §689d(2), inserted “security deposits,” after “hookups,”.

Subsec. (c)(2)(C). Pub. L. 109–295, §686(1), struck out subpar. (C) which read as follows: “The amount of assistance provided to a household under this paragraph shall not exceed $5,000, as adjusted annually to reflect changes in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers published by the Department of Labor.”

Subsec. (c)(3)(B), (C). Pub. L. 109–295, §686(2), redesignated subpar. (C) as (B) and struck out former subpar. (B) which read as follows: “The amount of assistance provided to a household under this paragraph shall not exceed $10,000, as adjusted annually to reflect changes in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers published by the Department of Labor.”

Subsec. (c)(4). Pub. L. 109–295, §685, in introductory provisions, inserted “or semi-permanent” after “permanent” and struck out “remote” before “locations”.

Subsec. (d)(1)(A)(ii), (iii). Pub. L. 109–295, §689(c)(2), added cl. (ii) and redesignated former cl. (ii) as (iii).

Subsecs. (i), (j). Pub. L. 109–295, §696(c), added subsec. (i) and redesignated former subsec. (i) as (j).

2000–Pub. L. 106–390 amended section catchline and text generally. Prior to amendment, text provided for temporary housing assistance through provision of temporary housing, temporary mortgage and rental payment assistance, expenditures to repair or restore owner-occupied private residential structures made uninhabitable by a major disaster which are capable of being restored quickly, and transfer of temporary housing to occupants or to States, local governments, and voluntary organizations, required notification to applicants for assistance, and set out location factors to be given consideration in the provision of assistance.

Effective Date of 2000 Amendment

Pub. L. 106–390, title II, §206(d), Oct. 30, 2000, 114 Stat. 1571, provided that: “The amendments made by this section [amending this section and section 5192 of this title and repealing section 5178 of this title] take effect 18 months after the date of the enactment of this Act [Oct. 30, 2000].”