Minor Concerns with Initial Harvey Request

Washington – According to reports, the Trump administration will submit a $5.9 billion emergency funding request to Congress potentially as soon as Friday.  As The Heritage Foundation explained this week, emergency spending must meet five criteria: necessary, sudden, urgent, unforeseen, and not permanent. Heritage Action released the following statement from vice president Dan Holler:

“Heritage Action is eager to review the full proposal, but initial reports are largely encouraging as FEMA’s immediate response is prioritized. It is imperative the administration and lawmakers avoid a Sandy-style package riddled with non-emergency spending. Any funds that fall outside the strict definition of ‘emergency spending’ should, such as the reported inclusion of small business loans, be offset.”

Justin Bogie, The Heritage Foundation’s senior policy analyst in fiscal affairs, added:

“The federal relief offered by the SBA’s Disaster Loan Program (DLP) creates a ‘moral hazard’ by discouraging businesses and individuals from purchasing insurance to cover the risks of natural disasters. Unlike the National Flood Insurance Program, nobody bought into the DLP. Rather, it serves as a government subsidy where the SBA alone makes decisions about who qualifies for and receives benefits. In many cases the loans fail to offer a long-term solution and property owners and taxpayers alike would be better served by relying on the private insurance market.”