Revision 23-1; Effective Jan. 31, 2023

4100 Overview of HHSC Disaster Roles and Responsibilities

Revision 23-1; Effective Jan. 31, 2023 

Authority for the administration of the Other Needs Assistance (ONA) provision of the IHP is delegated from the HHSC office of System Support Services (SSS) to its Emergency Services Program (ESP). Administration of the program is the responsibility of the ESP director. ESP is responsible for providing program direction and technical assistance to the regions. Each region is responsible for providing a regional disaster assistance coordinator (RDAC) and HHSC volunteer staff to deliver appropriate and timely services.

ERM represents HHSC at the TEMC. In the State Emergency Management Plan, HHSC is the primary agency responsible for the Food and Water Annex. This involves coordinating with other state agencies and volunteer organizations to provide food, water and ice to communities hit by a disaster.

4200 Emergency Services Program (ESP)

Revision 23-1; Effective Jan. 31, 2023 

The Emergency Services Program (ESP) is responsible for administration of the ONA provision of the IHP. The ESP is a component of the office of SSS. In this handbook, the federal award coordinating officer (FACO) is assigned management responsibility for the ONA. Federal regulations define the FACO as the state official assigned management responsibility for the ONA provision of the IHP.

Responsibilities of ONA Administration

The general responsibilities of ONA administration are as follows:

  • Staffing the disaster recovery center in coordination with TDEM and FEMA, if staff and budget resources are available.
  • Negotiating with the state coordinating officer and the federal coordinating officer.
  • Negotiating with other disaster assistance agencies.
  • Conducting program monitoring activities.
  • Providing internal and external reports as required.
  • Coordinating program activities with appropriate HHSC support offices to provide for processing of grant benefit payments.
  • Developing policy and providing policy interpretations and guidelines.
  • Maintaining the IHP/ONA handbook and administrative plan.
  • Developing and maintaining training packages and providing training to ONA program staff.

4300 State Office Support

Revision 09-1; Effective July 20, 2009

4310 Emergency Management/Homeland Security Workgroup

Revision 23-1; Effective Jan. 31, 2023 

An Emergency Management/Homeland Security Workgroup consists of representatives of state office units with specific support functions relating to the ONA provision of IHP and HHSC responsibilities as a member of the TEMC. This workgroup coordinates plans for coping with disasters. As a member of the TMEC, HHSC participates in response operations for emergencies of state significance. HHSC responsibilities are set forth in the State of Texas Emergency Plan per Executive Order No. GA-05 relating to Emergency Management of Natural and Human-Caused Events, Emergencies, and Disasters. The Emergency Services Program shares responsibility in representing HHSC at the TEMC. 

4320 System Support Services (SSS)

Revision 23-1; Effective Jan. 31, 2023 

Facility and Warehouse Services

Facility and Warehouse Services is responsible for the following functions:

  • Providing a representative to act as a liaison to ESP. The representative works with the Business Services officer or designee to meet the needs of the ONA.
  • Coordinating with regional staff to acquire appropriate office space (if needed), equipment and supplies. Facility and Warehouse Services staff secure needed supplies when the ESP director notifies them of the number of staff to be hired, if needed.
  • Providing for scheduled and unscheduled delivery of forms and supplies for ONA staff at the Joint Field Office and at state office, if needed.
  • Arranging for the return of unused material to state office at the close of each disaster operation, if needed.

Human Resource Department

Human Resource Department staff assist in resolving personnel policy issues related to the ONA. HR is responsible for:

  • Facilitating hiring temporary workers.
  • Providing ongoing support to ESP in personnel matters.

4330 Access and Eligibility Services (AES)

Revision 23-1; Effective Jan. 31, 2023 

Lone Star Technology

The Issuance Services Unit coordinates with HHSC Access and Eligibility Services and the USDA to determine the need for and implementation of the SNAP in disaster situations.

4340 Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA)

Revision 09-1; Effective July 20, 2009

Special Nutrition Services

Special Nutrition Services coordinates with USDA, FEMA and the Red Cross to provide commodities in disaster situations.

4350 Information Technology (IT)

Revision 23-1; Effective Jan. 31, 2023 


The Production/Operations section of the Information Technology (IT) Division is responsible for production of payment files.

4360 Financial Services Division

Revision 23-1; Effective Jan. 31, 2023

Fiscal Management Services

Fiscal Management Services staff process the payment files for delivery to the state comptroller's office, disburse warrants to victims and provide reports for audit purposes. These duties involve the following tasks:

  • Process vendor identification (VID) maintenance and pay files delivered from Production Control, including distributing appropriate paperwork and obtaining appropriate signatures.
  • Process Comptroller's Exception Report, including:
    • giving "hold" information to ONA;
    • completing forms for VID file changes; and
    • giving "release" information to ONA.
  • Track disbursements and cancellations to provide ONA staff with accurate figures.
  • Serve as liaison between the ONA and financial management concerning:
    • returned warrants;
    • lost or stolen warrants;
    • replacement vouchers; and
    • Texas Identification Numbers (TIN) — Assigned numbers for applicants that are based on each applicant's Social Security number or a unique assigned number for applicants without a Social Security number. TIN numbers are used to track and process all payments made to an applicant. (See Section 12100, Overview of Automated Systems.)

4370 Office of Inspector General (OIG)

Revision 09-1; Effective July 20, 2009

Office of Inspector General (OIG) staff are responsible for investigating cases of suspected criminal or administrative misconduct by state office, regional or temporary staff. In cases of suspected applicant fraud, the ESP leader refers the case to the OIG.

4400 Regional Offices

Revision 23-1; Effective Jan. 31, 2023

Responsibilities of the Regional Director of Administrative Services

Regional Directors of Administrative Services (RDASs) are responsible for appointing regional disaster assistance coordinators (RDACs). Each RDAS divides their region into areas and appoints a regional coordinator for each area; however, the RDAS designates one staff person as lead regional coordinator for the region. 

If additional on-site administrative staff are needed during the initial two to three-week phase of the program, RDASs may request regional coordinators to assist areas other than their own. Usually, the region in which the disaster occurs provides the administrative staff that assist regional coordinators during the first six months.