Appeal Summary | Appeal Letter | Appeal Analysis | Back
Second Appeal Summary
PA ID# 023-91022; North Coast Railroad Authority
DSR ID# 44661; Bell Springs
Citation: FEMA-979-DR-CA; North Coast Railroad Authority; DSR 44661
Cross Reference: Landslide Policy
Summary: Due to heavy rainfall and storm runoff during the FEMA-979 storm event, numerous sites along the railway owned and operated by the North Coast Railroad Authority (subgrantee) were damaged. Numerous DSRs were prepared to fund the repairs of various damage sites along the railway. DSR 44661 was prepared to fund the repairs along an approximately 1000-foot area of the track within the site known as Bell Springs, as well as five other sites. The subgrantee submitted a request for supplemental funding for the repair of approximately 4000 feet of track within the Bell Springs site area; however, it was determined that the site was unstable due to a number of pre-existing conditions and that the request included landslide stabilization work. The supplement request was initially denied on September 18, 1996. During the OIG audit and closeout of its disaster application, the subgrantee claimed costs for essentially the same type of repairs at Bell Springs as denied in the September lettter. That request was denied by letter dated December 24, 1998, and is considered the substantive equivalent of a first appeal. The subgrantee submitted an appeal of that determination which is considered a second appeal. In its appeal, the subgrantee states that the only work accomplished at the site was rebuilding the roadbed to restore the track to its original alignment. Further, the subgrantee states that the damage at Bell Springs was caused by river bank erosion, and the Bell Springs area only becomes unstable when "disasters caused by heavy rains and flooding inundate the soil and the river washes away the roadbed."
- 1. Is the site unstable?
- 2. Was the instability exclusively caused by the disaster?
- Yes. The subgrantee's geotechnical consultant confirms the instability.
- No. A number of identified, pre-existing conditions have contributed to the instability of the site.
Rationale: The Landslide Policy states if a site is unstable due to an identified, pre-existing condition, the subgrantee is responsible for stabilizing the site. Once the site has been stabilized, the cost to restore the facility at the original site is eligible.