As the Federal Emergency Management Agency works to provide Americans with proper Hurricane Sandy relief, the agency also prepares to fight its own battle from within.
FEMA stands to lose about $878 million if the government’s automatic spending cuts go into effect by January 2013, the Washington Post reports. With a $14.3 billion budget to coordinate responses to natural disasters like Hurricane Sandy, FEMA could lose $580 million of its budget from disaster relief alone, according to a report by The National Association of Counties.
Cuts to FEMA’s budget are part of the debt-limit deal outlined by the Budget Control Act of 2011. The deal requires the government to cut the deficit by $1.2 trillion or accept automatic spending cuts across the board in programs such as Medicare and national defense.
FEMA currently has at is disposal close to $7.8 billion for Hurricane Sandy relief, according to Politico. In addition, Congress’s decision to raise the debt ceiling last year allows FEMA to access several billion in additional emergency funds.
“We have plenty of cash in the short term… but we will watch very closely,” a Senate Democratic aide told Politico. “We will not want to end the 112th Congress without making sure the disaster relief fund is sound for fiscal year 2013.”