We Now Know How Harvey Relief Funding Is Being Spent

Illustration for article titled We Now Know How Harvey Relief Funding Is Being Spentem/em
Photo: AP

Hurricane Harvey poured 27 trillion gallons of water over Texas and Louisiana in August. Six months have passed since then, and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has finally released an online public tool to help users track where state recovery funds are going.


“As the state continues to receive federal aid and devote necessary resources to our recovery efforts, it is important that Texans know where this money is going,” Abbott said in a news release.

The new program sits underneath the governor’s Commission to Rebuild Texas and contains data on funds state agencies have used since the hurricane hit. Right now, the only agencies included are the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Texas General Land Office. The state will add more data as agencies provide it.


The state’s got a lot of work to do, from housing people to distributing these resources where they’re needed most. State leaders have said they need $121 billion to properly rebuild. Luckily, a budget bill passed in February will give Texas some money, but the $90 billion package is for all sorts of natural disasters in 2017—not just Harvey.

Here’s where these disaster funds have gone so far—by the numbers.

$13.3 billion

Amount of federal dollars given to Texan survivors

$845 million

Amount of federal dollars given to survivors in Jefferson County, Texas, one of the hardest hit counties made up predominantly of blacks and Latinos


Number of FEMA-approved applicants in Texas


Number of FEMA-approved applicants in Jefferson County

$8.5 billion

Amount paid toward National Flood Insurance Program settlements in Texas

$391 million

Amount paid toward NFIP settlements in Jefferson County


Number of households in hotel rooms with FEMA funds


Number of applicants put in housing

1 percent

Portion of direct housing eligible applicants housed


Yessenia Funes is climate editor at Atmos Magazine. She loves Earther forever.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter