Use the links below to skip to the appendix you wish to view:
- Appendix A—Resources That the State and Federal Government Make Available to Disaster Survivors After a Natural Disaster
- Appendix B—Scope and Methodology
Resources That the State and Federal Government Make Available to Disaster Survivors After a Natural Disaster
Table A lists the services and financial assistance that the state and federal governments make available to disaster survivors following natural disasters. Table A does not include assistance or services that are not specific to natural disasters; rather, it lists assistance or services for which the disaster survivors may become eligible as a result of the impact of a natural disaster, such as services available to people with low incomes.
|State||General Eligibility||Key Program or Service Benefits|
|Department of Social Services State Supplemental Grant Program||Individuals who have received the maximum housing assistance from FEMA.||Assists with rental housing; repairing/replacing homes and personal property; cleaning and debris removal; and disaster‑related illness, injury, or funeral costs.|
|Disaster CalFresh||Disaster survivors who do not exceed certain income limits.||Provides one month's worth of food benefits that can be used to purchase food at authorized retail stores.|
|Department of Motor Vehicles||Disaster survivors.||Replaces certain DMV documents, such as driver's licenses and vehicle registration, at no cost if lost or damaged due to a disaster.|
|CalWORKS Program||Families that become homeless as a result of a declared natural disaster.||Provides temporary and permanent homeless assistance.|
|Board of Equalization||Owners of real property and certain other property types damaged by declared natural disasters, as permitted by county ordinance.||Provides property tax relief.|
|Employment Development Department||Workers unemployed due to a disaster or emergency.||Provides unemployment insurance, disability insurance, or paid family leave. In addition, assists individuals in applying for federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) when authorized by the President.|
|Franchise Tax Board||Taxpayers who experience disaster losses.||Provides guidance in obtaining tax relief for disaster losses.|
|Federal||General Eligibility||Key Program or Service Benefits|
|American Red Cross (Red Cross)*||Disaster survivors.||Provides shelter, food, bulk distribution of needed supplies, first aid, and welfare information.|
|FEMA Individuals and Households Program||People affected by a declared disaster who have uninsured or underinsured necessary expenses and serious needs.||Provides financial housing assistance for rent, home repairs, and home replacement. Also provides direct housing assistance, such as manufactured housing units, when survivors cannot use rental assistance because they lack housing resources.|
|FEMA Individuals and Households Program Other Needs Assistance Provision||Disaster survivors who apply for a U.S. Small Business Administration disaster loan and are either denied or can demonstrate that the loan does not cover all their necessary expenses.||Provides financial assistance for funeral expenses, medical expenses, moving and storage expenses, and repair or replacement of personal property, including clothing, household items, transportation, and other property.|
|FEMA Transitional Shelter Assistance||FEMA-registered disaster survivors, displaced from their residence because of a disaster.||Provides short-term stays in hotels or motels.|
|U.S. Small Business Administration Disaster Loan Assistance||Homeowners and renters in declared disaster areas. Individuals do not need to own a business.||Offers low-interest, long-term loans to repair or replace homes, refinance mortgages, and replace damaged or destroyed personal property.|
|United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development||Low-income homeowners in rural areas.||Provides loans and grants to help with repairs from damages caused by disasters. Individuals can also receive priority for renting USDA‑financed rental housing.|
Source: Disaster relief documentation from FEMA, Cal OES, California Department of Social Services, and the websites for the disaster programs and services contained in Table A.
* We included the Red Cross as a federal resource available to disaster survivors because as we mention in the report, the Red Cross has a federal charter to provide relief across the country during natural disasters.
Scope and Methodology
The Audit Committee directed the California State Auditor to examine emergency plans for the safe and efficient evacuation of residents with access and functional needs in counties that have experienced natural disasters. We reviewed the extent that three counties—Butte, Sonoma, and Ventura—have incorporated best practices related to protecting people with access and functional needs during natural disasters into their emergency plans. We also reviewed the extent to which Cal OES has provided key guidance to local jurisdictions to support them in planning to meet access and functional needs. We did not assess particular claims or complaints, nor did we evaluate or reach conclusions about matters pending before various legal tribunals whether related to liability, fault, damages, or any related issues. Table B below lists the objectives that the Audit Committee approved and the methods we used to address them.
|1||Review and evaluate the laws, rules and regulations significant to the audit objectives.||Reviewed relevant federal and state laws, rules, regulations, and best practices related to emergency management, emergency plans, and access and functional needs.|
|2||Review a selection of after-action reports that cities and counties have filed with Cal OES and other available sources of information for recent emergencies and disasters, including wildfires, to identify lessons learned regarding assisting individuals with access and functional needs during and after the incidents.||
For a selection of three counties that have recently experienced natural disasters, evaluate the counties' processes for ensuring that individuals with access and functional needs are accounted and cared for before, during, and after an emergency or disaster by doing the following:
a. Identify requirements in state and federal law and best practices for emergency response regarding accounting for and assisting individuals with access and functional needs—such as elderly residents and residents with disabilities—during emergencies, including emergency communication, evacuation, and sheltering. Assess the counties' emergency plans, including whether the plans adequately incorporate those requirements and best practices.
b. Determine the extent and frequency with which the counties have reviewed and updated their emergency plans and have incorporated lessons learned from recent emergencies and disasters to ensure that those with access and functional needs are evacuated in a safe and efficient manner.
c. Identify and assess the resources and programs the counties make available to individuals with access and functional needs following an evacuation.
|4||For the counties selected for Objective 3, determine what additional resources, information, or guidance they require to develop effective emergency plans, including whether changes to statewide policy are necessary.||
|5||Determine the number of casualties that have occurred as a result of an emergency or disaster over the last five years, including, to the extent possible, the proportion of casualties that were individuals with access and functional needs.||
|6||Review and assess any other issues that are significant to the audit.||Did not identify any additional significant issues.|
Source: Analysis of the Audit Committee's audit request number 2019-103, as well as information and documentation identified in the table column titled Method.