New report (40 pages) from the Congressional Research Service: The Disaster Relief Fund: Overview and Issues.
The Disaster Relief Fund (DRF) is one of the most-tracked single accounts funded by Congress each year.Managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), it is the primary source of funding for the federal government’s domestic general disaster relief programs. These programs, authorized under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, as amended (42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq.), outline the federal role in supporting state, local, tribal,and territorial governments as they respond to and recover from a variety of incidents.They take effect in the event that nonfederallevels of government find their own capacity to deal with anincident is overwhelmed.