Deployable Federal Assets Supporting Domestic Disaster Response Operations: Summary and Considerations for Congress [May 16, 2014] [open pdf - 662KB]
From the introduction: "This report examines a variety of deployable federal assets that can support a disaster response operation. These assets may be able to support the response to certain types of consequences from certain disasters (e.g., radiological exposure from a nuclear incident) or consequences common to all disasters (e.g., command and control support, or communications assistance). This report provides a general analysis of key concepts involving deployable federal assets, including:  what it means to be a deployable federal asset;  when the assets will be used to support response operations;  what the main authorities and policies are that guide the use of assets; and  what level of support the federal government is prepared to provide for response operations. This report also examines several issues Congress may wish to consider as it evaluates the future authorization and funding for various deployable federal assets. Issues examined in the report include the potential policy benefits and disadvantages of federal investment in deployable federal assets, the cost-effectiveness of different staffing models for the assets, the methods for financing the deployment of the assets, whether federal assets should have greater operational control in response operations, and the challenges Congress may face in its oversight of the use of the assets. This report concludes by providing summaries of examples of deployable federal assets, including available information on their authorization, funding, and past uses in disasters. Brief information on the selected assets is condensed and presented in Table 1."
CRS Report for Congress, R43560