The FMAGP is based on a hierarchy of Federal statute, regulations, policies, and guidance. The statute is the underlying action that authorizes the FMAGP. From the statute, regulations are created to outline program operations, and policies are written to apply the statute and regulations to specific situations. These documents govern the eligibility criteria through which FEMA provides funds for fire management assistance under the FMAGP.
The FMAGP is authorized under Section 420 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Act, 42 U.S.C. 5187, as amended by the Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000. FMAGP regulations are implemented under 44 CFR § 204.
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Statutes are laws passed by the U.S. Congress and signed by the President. They cannot be changed by FEMA or any other government agency. The law that authorizes the FMAGP is the Stafford Act. The basic provisions outlined in the Stafford Act:
- Give FEMA the authority to administer Federal disaster assistance;
- Define the extent of coverage and eligibility criteria of the disaster assistance programs;
- Authorize grants to the States; and
- Define the minimum Federal cost-sharing levels and thresholds.
The FMAGP is authorized under Section 420 of the Stafford Act. Section 403 of the Stafford Act, Essential Assistance, provides information as it pertains to Emergency Work.
Click on this link to access the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Act
Regulations are rules designed to implement a statute based on an agency’s interpretation of that statute. Such rules provide procedural requirements for program operations. Typically, they are published through an official process that allows for public comment. Regulations have the same effect as law and must be complied with once they are published in final form. The regulations published in 44 CFR Part 204 govern the FMAGP and outline program procedures, eligibility, and policies.
Additional regulations regarding grant administration and allowable costs can be found in 44 CFR Part 13, Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Governments (refer to Appendix C).
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