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Defense Emergency Response Fund

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This report discusses the use of DoD emergency funds to finance DoD-assisted relief efforts in declared emergencies. Under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, Public Law 106-390, October 30, 2000, DoD may be required to provide assistance to Federal agencies and state and local governments in response to major disasters or states of emergency declared by the President. In FY 1990, Congress established the Defense Emergency Response Fund DERF to reimburse DoD for providing disaster or emergency assistance to other Federal agencies and to state and local governments in anticipation of reimbursable requests. The Treasury index symbol for the DERF is 97X4965 and was initially funded at 100 million. The purpose of DERF is to allow DoD to provide disaster and emergency relief assistance without depleting the funds it needs to accomplish its mission. In FY 1994, Congress provided an additional 299.3. million to DERF specifically to provide emergency relief for Rwanda and for emergency migrant processing and safe-haven costs in or around Cuba. This audit was to determine whether DERF was used for its intended purposes and is sufficiently funded to allow DoD to continue providing disaster assistance around the world. DoD Components properly used DERF for disaster and humanitarian assistance. However, DoD treated DERF as a direct fund cite account instead of as a reimbursable account, as required by Public Law 101-165. In addition, based on our review of Defense Finance and Accounting Service reports, we believe that DERF was not reimbursed by the Department of State for 11 overseas projects performed by DoD. Because DERF was not used as a reimbursable account, the DoD Components have about 12.1 million in DERF direct obligation authority that has remained unobligated for more than 10 years and should be returned to the Under Secretary of Defense ComptrollerChief Financial Officer.

Subject Categories:

  • Administration and Management
  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
  • Meteorology

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