PA ID# 087-91024; Santa Cruz City Schools
DSR ID# 16097; Remove mud, silt and sand from Arana Creek
Citation: FEMA-1044-DR-CA; Santa Cruz City Schools DSR 16097
Cross-Reference: Immediate Threat; Damage to unimproved property
Summary: As a result of the 1995 Winter Storms Disaster, DSR 16097 was written to remove mud, silt and sand from Arana Creek between State Highway 1 and Harbor High School Emergency Access Road. The Category A DSR was written for $1,939 for removal of 277 cubic yards of debris. During review, FEMA determined that the area of proposed work was a natural unmaintained area and subsequently not eligible for funding. The subgrantee's first appeal was denied by FEMA since debris removal is considered eligible for funding when it is necessary to eliminate immediate threats to improved public or private property. The first appeal response from FEMA stated that Arana Creek was not considered improved property. The subgrantee filed a second appeal on the basis that the creek was an improved facility since it was "engineered" in 1966 and was partially lined with concrete. They address the issue of immediate threat to public property by stating that "heavy, prolonged 'event' rainfall in the Arana Creek watershed would result in the debris totally blocking the channel. The blocked channel would cause the water to flow over the tennis courts and across to the swimming pool berm and Gymnasium and parking lots," causing major damage to these facilities without intervention.
Does removal of the debris meet immediate threat criteria?
Is Arana Creek in the area identified in DSR 16097 an eligible facility?
No. The debris in of the creek has not been shown to pose an immediate threat to life or improved property.
No. The subgrantee has not demonstrated that Arana Creek between State Highway 1 and Harbor High School Emergency Access Road is an improved and maintained natural feature as required in the definition of an eligible facility.
Rationale: Emergency debris removal is not eligible unless an immediate threat is demonstrated. Restoration of a natural feature is not eligible.