Financing the Disaster Recovery

Without funding, there will be no recovery, no mitigation, no prevention measures.

by Eric Holdeman / November 5, 2018

I have to admit I had not heard of the Council of Development Finance Agencies (DCFA) before I got an email from Michael Warfel who shared the information below.

Funding is "the critical" element that helps a community or region recover from disaster. Hopefully, as part of their efforts, they are looking at disaster mitigation as part of the recovery process. See information below and a link to a webinar happening next Wednesday.

Financing Economic Recovery in the Wake of Disaster — Searching for a Permanent Solution

In the aftermath of severe weather events and natural disasters, communities around the country often find themselves in dire need of federal assistance to enable recovery and rebuild essential infrastructure. While the federal aid offered through the Stafford Act offers a much-needed source of funds for communities affected by disasters, those funds are rarely available in the immediate onset of a disaster and are often insufficient for comprehensive recovery efforts.

American communities are in need of a permanent financing tool that they can access immediately after disaster strikes, and that can leverage private investment for longer-term redevelopment of essential infrastructure. CDFA advocates for the creation of a permanent tax-exempt bond program for disaster recovery. These bonds, to be known as Disaster-area Recovery Bonds, would be separate from federal volume cap restrictions and capped at $20 billion in annual issuance.

They could be used to finance:

  • the acquisition, construction, reconstruction or renovation of non-residential real property;
  • the construction and rehabilitation of multi-family rental property for low and moderate income individuals, and
  • the repair or reconstruction of damaged public utility facilities and transportation infrastructure.

Read the Full CDFA Disaster-area Recovery Bond Proposal

As part of our efforts to find a permanent financing solution for disaster recovery, CDFA will host a webinar on November 14th at 2:00 PM Eastern that highlights the available economic recovery tools for regions impacted by natural disasters. Financing Economic Recovery in the Wake of Disaster will feature experienced development finance practitioners from the federal, state, and local level, as they discuss the financing options available to communities affected by disasters.

Register for Financing Economic Recovery in the Wake of Disaster

The devastation caused by natural disasters necessitates a permanent solution for communities around the country, and CDFA is actively working with members of Congress to pass legislation that meets that need. To get engaged with CDFA’s legislative work, contact Tim Fisher.

The Council of Development Finance Agencies is a national association dedicated to the advancement of development finance concerns and interests. CDFA is comprised of the nation's leading and most knowledgeable members of the development finance community representing public, private and non-profit entities alike. For more information about CDFA, visit or email

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