Public Assistance

In federally-declared disasters, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) can provide funding and technical help to state and local governments and certain private, non-profit groups. This funding will help to fix or replace damaged public properties such as roads, bridges, buildings and parks that have been damaged or destroyed.

FEMA also can offer help for emergency protective measures, debris removal, emergency communications and emergency public transportation. 

NCEM Public Assistance Contacts
NCEM Public Assistance 101 - The Basics

The Public Assistance program serves as the direct contact between FEMA and the applicant. Repayment is available to all groups and areas meeting the requirements. Trained grant managers help applicants through the reimbursement process. In most cases, federal funding help is made available on a cost-sharing basis.

FEMA normally pays 75 percent of the eligible costs while the state and/or local government pays what is left. (Historically, the state has paid the remaining cost share in North Carolina.)

How to Apply

Potentially eligible applicants are local government entities and certain private non-profits:

If you think your group meets these criteria or may be qualified, have an official representative register in the FEMA Grants Portal by sending an email to with the following information:

  1. Organization Name
  2. Contact Name
  3. Contact Phone Number
  4. Contact Email Address
  5. If you are a non-profit, and if you are 501c, d or e, or tax-exempt according to the NC Secretary of State.

If you are in a declared area you will be prompted to fill out and submit a Request for Public Assistance. If this form is not sent in by the deadline and the place is later found to have had major damage, it may be too late to apply.

If you are not able to get Public Assistance funding but feel you may qualify for another program, please contact a member of North Carolina Emergency Management or the Small Business Association to figure out what help you may be able to get for your group

Forms and Resources