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42 U.S. Code § 5143 - Coordinating officers

(a) Appointment of Federal coordinating officer

Immediately upon his declaration of a major disaster or emergency, the President shall appoint a Federal coordinating officer to operate in the affected area.

(b) Functions of Federal coordinating officerIn order to effectuate the purposes of this chapter, the Federal coordinating officer, within the affected area, shall—
make an initial appraisal of the types of relief most urgently needed;
establish such field offices as he deems necessary and as are authorized by the President;
coordinate the administration of relief, including activities of the State and local governments, the American National Red Cross, the Salvation Army, the Mennonite Disaster Service, and other relief or disaster assistance organizations, which agree to operate under his advice or direction, except that nothing contained in this chapter shall limit or in any way affect the responsibilities of the American National Red Cross under chapter 3001 of title 36; and
take such other action, consistent with authority delegated to him by the President, and consistent with the provisions of this chapter, as he may deem necessary to assist local citizens and public officials in promptly obtaining assistance to which they are entitled.
(c) State coordinating officer

When the President determines assistance under this chapter is necessary, he shall request that the Governor of the affected State designate a State coordinating officer for the purpose of coordinating State and local disaster assistance efforts with those of the Federal Government.

(d) Single Federal coordinating officer for multistate area

Where the area affected by a major disaster or emergency includes parts of more than 1 State, the President, at the discretion of the President, may appoint a single Federal coordinating officer for the entire affected area, and may appoint such deputy Federal coordinating officers to assist the Federal coordinating officer as the President determines appropriate.

(Pub. L. 93–288, title III, § 302, formerly § 303, May 22, 1974, 88 Stat. 147; renumbered § 302 and amended Pub. L. 100–707, title I, § 105(b), Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4691; Pub. L. 109–295, title VI, § 687, Oct. 4, 2006, 120 Stat. 1448.)
Editorial Notes
References in Text

This chapter, referred to in subsecs. (b) and (c), was in the original “this Act”, meaning Pub. L. 93–288, May 22, 1974, 88 Stat. 143. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 5121 of this title and Tables.


In subsec. (b)(3), “chapter 3001 of title 36” substituted for “the Act of January 5, 1905, as amended (33 Stat. 599)” on authority of Pub. L. 105–225, § 5(b), Aug. 12, 1998, 112 Stat. 1499, the first section of which enacted Title 36, Patriotic and National Observances, Ceremonies, and Organizations.

Prior Provisions

A prior section 302 of Pub. L. 93–288 was classified to section 5142 of this title prior to repeal by Pub. L. 100–707.


2006—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 109–295 added subsec. (d).

1988—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 100–707 inserted “or emergency” after “major disaster”.