PA ID# 000-91011; Lower Crow Creek Improvement Association
DSR ID# 85360; Excess Pumping Costs for Drainage District
Citation: FEMA-1218-DR-SD; Lower Crow Creek Improvement Association; PA ID 000-91011; DSR 85360; Eligibility as a Drainage District.
Reference: Storm and Flood disaster; determination of drainage districts
Summary: The Lower Crow Creek Improvement Association (LCCIA) applied for disaster assistance in the aftermath of the storm and heavy rains disaster that occurred during the period April 25 to June 22, 1998. The applicant incurred costs when it pumped water into the James River to protect improved property in the Putney Slough area. Initially the applicant indicated on its Notice of Interest that it was a private nonprofit (PNP) organization. When FEMA determined that it did not qualify as a PNP applicant, LCCIA represented itself as a state political subdivision-specifically a drainage district. FEMA generated DSR 85360 on August 25, 1998, for $30,776 to fund pumping costs to LCCIA but suspended the DSR until LCCIA provided documentation to show its legal status as a drainage district. FEMA Region VIII worked with the applicant to establish eligibility but by January 31, 1999, no documentation could be provided. FEMA processed the DSR as ineligible. LCCIA's attorney submitted a July 5, 1999, appeal of FEMA's ineligible determination without providing the documentation that FEMA sought; rather she stated that justification existed in the Brown County courthouse. When the Alternate Governor's Authorized Representative (GAR) asked about documentation, the attorney provided copies of minutes of two meetings, Articles of Association and By-Laws, none of which addressed the question FEMA raised. The GAR forwarded the appeal to FEMA on August 3, 1999. FEMA had previously asked the State's Regional Coordinator in the Office of Emergency Management for an opinion of the applicant's governmental agency status and was informed that no records could be found establishing such. FEMA again submitted a list of questions to the State's Attorney who declined to answer. FEMA, therefore, denied the appeal on February 7, 2000, because no documentation was produced establishing that LCCIA was a legally constituted special purpose body under South Dakota Codified Law. The GAR forwarded the applicant's second appeal on April 17, 2000.
Issue: Was LCCIA a legal entity of the state of South Dakota and eligible to receive disaster assistance from FEMA?
Finding: No. There is no record that LCCIA was legally established as a drainage district.