United States Code
USC most recently checked for updates: Feb 09, 2023
As used in this chapter—
“Emergency” means any occasion or instance for which, in the determination of the President, Federal assistance is needed to supplement State and local efforts and capabilities to save lives and to protect property and public health and safety, or to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe in any part of the United States.
“Major disaster” means any natural catastrophe (including any hurricane, tornado, storm, high water, winddriven water, tidal wave, tsunami, earthquake, volcanic eruption, landslide, mudslide, snowstorm, or drought), or, regardless of cause, any fire, flood, or explosion, in any part of the United States, which in the determination of the President causes damage of sufficient severity and magnitude to warrant major disaster assistance under this chapter to supplement the efforts and available resources of States, local governments, and disaster relief organizations in alleviating the damage, loss, hardship, or suffering caused thereby.
“United States” means the fifty States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
“State” means any State of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
“Governor” means the chief executive of any State.
The term “Indian tribal government” means the governing body of any Indian or Alaska Native tribe, band, nation, pueblo, village, or community that the Secretary of the Interior acknowledges to exist as an Indian tribe under the Federally Recognized Indian Tribe List Act of 1994 (25 U.S.C. 479a et seq.).1
1See References in Text note below.
The term “individual with a disability” means an individual with a disability as defined in section 12102(2) of this title.
The term “local government” means—
a county, municipality, city, town, township, local public authority, school district, special district, intrastate district, council of governments (regardless of whether the council of governments is incorporated as a nonprofit corporation under State law), regional or interstate government entity, or agency or instrumentality of a local government;
an Indian tribe or authorized tribal organization, or Alaska Native village or organization, that is not an Indian tribal government as defined in paragraph (6); and
a rural community, unincorporated town or village, or other public entity, for which an application for assistance is made by a State or political subdivision of a State.
“Federal agency” means any department, independent establishment, Government corporation, or other agency of the executive branch of the Federal Government, including the United States Postal Service, but shall not include the American National Red Cross.
“Public facility” means the following facilities owned by a State or local government:
Any flood control, navigation, irrigation, reclamation, public power, sewage treatment and collection, water supply and distribution, watershed development, or airport facility.
Any non-Federal-aid street, road, or highway.
Any other public building, structure, or system, including those used for educational, recreational, or cultural purposes.
The term “private nonprofit facility” means private nonprofit educational (without regard to the religious character of the facility), center-based childcare, utility, irrigation, emergency, medical, rehabilitational, and temporary or permanent custodial care facilities (including those for the aged and disabled) and facilities on Indian reservations, as defined by the President.
In addition to the facilities described in subparagraph (A), the term “private nonprofit facility” includes any private nonprofit facility that provides essential social services to the general public (including museums, zoos, performing arts facilities, community arts centers, community centers, libraries, homeless shelters, senior citizen centers, rehabilitation facilities, shelter workshops, food banks, broadcasting facilities, houses of worship, and facilities that provide health and safety services of a governmental nature), as defined by the President. No house of worship may be excluded from this definition because leadership or membership in the organization operating the house of worship is limited to persons who share a religious faith or practice.
The term “Chief Executive” means the person who is the Chief, Chairman, Governor, President, or similar executive official of an Indian tribal government.
(Pub. L. 93–288, title I, § 102,
May 22, 1974, 88 Stat. 144; Pub. L. 100–707, title I, § 103(b)–(d), (f), Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4689, 4690; Pub. L. 102–247, title II, § 205, Feb. 24, 1992, 106 Stat. 38; Pub. L. 106–390, title III, § 302, Oct. 30, 2000, 114 Stat. 1572; Pub. L. 109–295, title VI, § 688, Oct. 4, 2006, 120 Stat. 1448;
cite as: 42 USC 5122