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Public Assistance Grant Program

Looking for Individual Assistance?

Homeowners, renters or private business owners looking for assistance should visit the Individual Assistance page for guidance.
Public assistance is meant for governments and private non-profit organizations.


Upcoming Deadline for COVID-19 Event Project Applications

December 31, 2022, is the deadline for submitting project applications for funding requests for work performed between January 1, 2020, and July 1, 2022. This interim deadline does not affect the eligibility of funding for work completed after July 2, 2022, so long as the incident period remains open after that time. By December 31, applicants also must amend expedited funding projects to define all work activities through July 1, 2022, along with an updated cost estimate. See FEMA's deadline guidance for other deadline information, and contact with questions.

Recent Updates

COVID-19 Public Assistance: Getting Started

The first step to applying for public assistance project reimbursements is to determine applicant eligibility. Go to FEMA's Grants Portal to create an account and submit a request for public assistance (RPA). After being determined to be an eligible applicant, an organization can then then submit application(s) for projects.
Note: See the Grants Portal Account Quick Guide for help creating a Grants Portal account.

Review the Quick Hits section below to quickly learn more about the COVID-19 public assistance process. Direct questions to the IDHS Public Assistance Grant Program at
Note: For step-by-step guidance on submitting project applications, see the FEMA Public Assistance Applicant Quick Guide. Additionally, there are supplementary documents available below in the Quick Hits section.

Quick Hits

  • Streamlined Project Application

    Best-case scenario: A few days from Request for Public Assistance (RPA) submission and eligibility is determined. Then, from application submission, a week or so, depending on if additional information is needed.

    • Applicant completes and submits its project application(s) in Grants Portal. The project application includes detailed information about the activities for which an Applicant is requesting funding and lists supporting documentation the Applicant needs to provide to justify the request.
    • To reduce funding delays and maximize the Applicant’s administrative flexibilities to track costs, Applicants should generally report all activities on one project application. However, submitting a separate project application for distinct activities or time periods is advisable in certain scenarios.
    • Certain activities may require FEMA to complete a more in-depth environmental or historic preservation review (e.g., ground disturbance, hazardous materials, modifications to buildings or new construction). For these activities, the Applicant should submit one project.
    What Happens After Submitting the Application
    • FEMA and the Recipient review and validate the project application to ensure completeness, eligibility and compliance with federal laws and regulations on items such as contracting and environmental and historic preservation. Additional information from the Applicant during these reviews may be requested.
      • On small projects (anything under $131,000), the Applicant works directly with FEMA.
      • On large projects $131,000 or over, the application is reviewed by FEMA, then IDHS PA gets a look before obligation.
    • After eligibility is determined, the Applicant reviews all terms and conditions that FEMA or the Recipient include in the project application and signs an agreement to the funding terms, including requirements for reporting on project work progress and completion.
    • Post-award: Applicant provides additional documentation as its response efforts unfold and work is completed to document actual costs and expenditures of public assistance funds. Upon completion of work, the Applicant coordinates with the Recipient to formally close projects. The Applicant must retain records of all project-related documentation.
  • Eligible Assistance

    Under the COVID-19 Emergency, FEMA may provide assistance for emergency protective measures including, but not limited to, the following, if not funded by Health and Human Services (HHS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or other federal agency. While some activities listed may be eligible for funding through HHS and CDC, final reimbursement determinations will be coordinated by HHS and FEMA. FEMA will not duplicate any assistance provided by HHS and CDC:

    • Management, control and reduction of immediate threats to public health and safety
      • Emergency Operations Center costs
      • Training specific to the declared event
      • Disinfection of eligible public facilities
      • Technical assistance to state, tribal, territorial or local governments on emergency management and control of immediate threats to public health and safety
    • Emergency medical care
      • Non-deferrable medical treatment of infected persons in a shelter or temporary medical facility
      • Related medical facility services and supplies
      • Temporary medical facilities and/or enhanced medical or hospital capacity (for treatment when existing facilities are reasonably forecasted to become overloaded in the near term and cannot accommodate the patient load or to quarantine potentially infected persons)
      • Use of specialized medical equipment, medical waste disposal, or emergency medical transport
    • Medical sheltering (e.g., when existing facilities are reasonably forecasted to become overloaded in the near future and cannot accommodate needs)
      • All sheltering must be conducted in accordance with standards and/or guidance approved by HHS and CDC and must be implemented in a manner that incorporates social distancing measures
      • Non-congregate medical sheltering with prior approval by FEMA limited to that which is reasonable and necessary to address the public health needs of the event, is pursuant to the direction of appropriate public health officials and does not extend beyond the duration of the public health emergency
    • Household pet sheltering and containment actions related to household pets in accordance with CDC guidelines
    • Purchase and distribution of food, water, ice, medicine and other consumable supplies, to include personal protective equipment and hazardous material suits
    • Movement of supplies and persons, and search and rescue to locate and recover members of the population requiring assistance
    • Security and law enforcement (related to COVID-19)
    • Communications of general health and safety information to the public
    • Reimbursement for state, tribe, territory and/or local government force account overtime costs
  • Eligible Applicants
    Eligible Applicants
    • State and territorial governments
    • Tribal governments
    • Local governments
      • Counties and parishes
      • Municipalities, cities, towns, boroughs and townships
      • Local public authorities
      • School districts
      • Intrastate districts
      • Councils of governments (regardless of whether incorporated as non-profit corporations under state law)
      • Regional and interstate government entities
      • Agencies or instrumentalities of local governments
      • State-recognized tribes
      • Special districts established under state law
    • Eligible private non-profit organizations: To be an eligible private non-profit applicant, the organization must show:
      • A ruling letter from the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that was in effect as of the declaration date and granted tax exemption under sections 501(c), (d) or (e) of the Internal Revenue Code; or
      • Documentation from the state substantiating it is a non-revenue producing, non-profit entity organized or doing business under state law
    The Four Basic Components of Eligibility
    • An Applicant must be a state, territory, tribe, local government or private non-profit organization.
    • A Facility must be a building, public works, system, equipment or natural feature.
    • Work is categorized as either Emergency or Permanent. It must be required as a result of the declared incident, located within the designated disaster area and the legal responsibility of the Applicant.
    • Cost is the funding tied directly to eligible work, and must be adequately documented, authorized, necessary and reasonable. Eligible costs include labor, equipment, materials, contract work, as well as direct and indirect administrative costs.
  • Terms to Know

    Applicants: State, tribal, territorial or local governments or private non-profit entities that may request and receive subawards under a Recipient’s award.

    Recipients: State, tribal or territorial entities that receive and administer public assistance federal awards.

  • Documents

COVID-19 Helpful Websites

About the Public Assistance Grant Program

The mission of Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Public Assistance (PA) Grant Program is to provide assistance to state, tribal and local governments, and private non-profit organizations so that communities can quickly respond to and recover from man-made or natural disasters or emergencies declared by the President. Through the PA Program, FEMA provides supplemental Federal disaster grant assistance to include debris removal, emergency protective measures, and the repair, replacement, or restoration of disaster-damaged, publicly-owned/eligible private non-profit facilities. Log jam of debris at bridge with high waters

Information and resources found below provide details regarding the Public Assistance Grant Program. The Indiana Department of Homeland Security is the recipient of the federal funds and administers the FEMA program to statewide applicants (sub-recipients) for infrastructure and essential services damage.

The PA Program also encourages protection of these damaged facilities from future events by providing assistance for hazard mitigation measures during the recovery process. Reimbursements through the PA Program are subject to a cost share; 75 percent of eligible costs are reimbursed, and the remaining 25 percent is to be covered by the applicant.

Homeowners, renters or private business owners looking for assistance should visit the Individual Assistance page for guidance.