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Public Assistance Program

The Public Assistance (PA) Program provides aid to states, territories, tribes, local governments, and certain types of private non-profit organizations for debris removal, emergency protective measures and permanent repair, replacement, and restoration of damaged infrastructure. This assistance allows communities to quickly respond to and recover from Presidentially Declared major disasters or emergency disasters.

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency & Office of Homeland Security (IEMA-OHS) administers the Public Assistance Program as the Recipient for the State of Illinois. The program reimburses eligible

Applicants for at least 75% of eligible costs that were a direct result of the disaster incident. ​

Upon a declaration of a major disaster or emergency by the President, applicant briefings are conducted by the IEMA Public Assistance staff for potential applicants in the designated counties. These applicant briefings provide an overview of the program requirements and a hands-on session to complete the required application forms. To apply for assistance, each organization must complete and submit a FEMA Form 90-49, Request for Public Assistance form to IEMA within 30 days of the date of the Presidential declaration. Applicants must also complete and submit Public Assistance Grant AgreementPublic Assistance Risk Assessment, and FFATA Certification forms to IEMA before grant payments can be made.

For more information on the Public Assistance Program, please contact the IEMA Public Assistance staff at (217) 782-8719 or

The following information is for Federal Fiscal Year 2024 (FY24)

FY24 Per Capita Indicators

  • State Per Capita Indicator: $1.87
  • The minimum amount of disaster damage per state resident
    • (Population x # of State Residents)
      • (2020 Population 12,812,508) 
    • Without special considerations, demonstrated damages Illinois to request FEMA PA:
      • 12,812,508 x $1.87 = $23,959,389.96
  • County Per Capita Indicator: $4.60
  • Countywide population is multiplied by the county per capita indicator to demonstrate amount of disaster damage per county resident (County Population X $4.60 = cost per capita). County damage impacts are compiled to demonstrate the overall statewide damage impact estimate. 

Project Thresholds

Small Project:

  • The public assistance project is considered minimum if it is greater than the project minimum and less than the Large Project minimum.
  • FY24 Small Project Thresholds: Minimum $3,900
    • Special considerations for Small Projects:
      • Reduced administrative burden for projects under $1,037,000.
      • Streamlines documentation requirements for Small Projects
      • Completed Work-estimates acceptable in some cases.
        • Applicant Provided Estimates
      • Will only require summary documents. 
      • Full cost documentation will only be required for Large Projects

Large Project

  • The minimum cost for a project to be classified as 'Large.'
  • FY24 Threshold: $1,037,000 and greater

Cost Sharing

Federal/State Cost Share: Typically, the federal share is not less than 75% of the eligible cost.

Special Considerations

  • Insurance Reduction: Details on how insurance impacts funding eligibility.
  • Improved Projects: Information on additional funding for projects that improve upon pre-disaster conditions.
  • Alternate Projects: Information on the use of funds for alternate projects if the original project is no longer feasible.

Additional Assistance

  • Management Costs: Rates and eligibility criteria for the reimbursement of management costs incurred by the grantee and subgrantee.
  • Direct Federal Assistance: Circumstances under which the federal government will provide direct assistance if the state or local government lacks the capability to perform or contract for the work.