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Congress Weighs $52 Billion Storm Aid Request

Congress is expected to respond promptly to President Bush's request for an additional $52 billion in aid for Hurricane Katrina victims. While Democrats and Republicans agree on the need for more money, they continue to argue over responsibility for the slow federal response to the disaster.

The aid bill before Congress provides $50 billion for the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Disaster Relief Fund, $1.4 billion for the Department of Defense and $400 million for the Army Corps of Engineers to repair damaged infrastructure.

The $50 billion for the FEMA Disaster Relief Fund is expected to be spent for the following:

· $23.2 billion for Individual and Housing Assistance

· $11.0 billion for Mission Assignments (tasks issued by FEMA to agencies, but are reimbursable from the DRF)

· $3.0 billion for Army Corps of Engineers

· $2.5 billion for DOD

· $5.5 billion for other (HHS, DOT, GSA, etc…)

· $7.65 billion for Public Assistance

· $1.6 billion for an additional 100,000 (200,000 already purchased) trailers for temporary housing

· $4.6 billion for FEMA Operations (Logistics, Supplies and Materials, and Urban Search and Rescue)

· $1.3 billion for other needs (Disaster Unemployment Insurance, Damage Inspections, Counseling, Legal and other expenses)

· $650 million for mitigation activities

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

David Welna is NPR's national security correspondent.