Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Legislation for Disaster Assistance: Summary Data [Updated October 31, 2008] [open pdf - 232KB]
"This report provides summary information on emergency supplemental appropriations enacted after major disasters since 1989. During the 20-year span from FY1989 through the present, Congress appropriated almost $271 billion in constant 2008 dollars. Most of the appropriations were preceded by a presidential request for supplemental funding. In 2008 a number of major natural disasters took place including Hurricanes Ike and Gustav, the California wildfires, and the Midwest floods. To date however, the most costly disasters occurred in the summer of 2005 when Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma made landfall in Gulf Coast states. […] Prior to FY2005 and the hurricanes, only the terrorist attacks of 2001 led to supplemental appropriations legislation that exceeded $20 billion. Congress appropriated a total of more than $26 billion for disaster assistance in response to the attacks. […] At times, the supplementals enacted by Congress have included only disaster funding. The supplementals enacted after Hurricane Hugo and the Loma Prieta earthquake, in addition to the first two enacted after Hurricane Katrina, serve as examples. On other occasions, however, disaster funding has been part of larger pieces of legislation that appropriated funds for purposes other than disaster assistance. The most recent supplemental disaster assistance appropriation occurred on September 30, 2008 when the President signed into law H.R. 2638, the Consolidated Security, Disaster Assistance, and Continuing Appropriations Act, 2009. The statute, P.L.110-329, provides $21.3 billion in emergency supplemental appropriations for relief and recovery from hurricanes, floods, and other natural disasters."
CRS Report for Congress, RL33226