PA ID# 111-UL4GF-00; Ventura County Watershed Protection District
PW ID# 1260 and 1592; North Simi Drain and Tapo Canyon Channel
Citation: FEMA-1577-DR-CA; Ventura County Watershed Protection Dis-
Summary: As a result of the January 2005 Winter Storms, the Ventura County Watershed Protection District (Applicant) requested funding for debris removal from North Simi Drain and Tapo Canyon Channel. The United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) determined that the facilities met the definition of a Flood Control Work (FCW) and that the debris did not pose an immediate threat to life, public health and safety, or improved property. Therefore, FEMA obligated Project Worksheets (PWs) 1260 and 1592, respectively, for zero dollars ($0).
The Applicant submitted its first appeal on October 31, 2005, stating that the costs were eligible as the facility was not active in the USACE Rehabilitation and Inspection Program (RIP), and as such, was not under the specific authority of the USACE. This allows FEMA to waive its respective administrative conditions on reimbursement of facilities under the authority of another Federal agency. The Applicant stated it had sole responsibility for maintenance; thus, the debris removal should be eligible for reimbursement under the FEMA Public Assistance Program. On December 8, 2006, FEMA denied the Applicants first appeal stating the facility met the USACE definition of an FCW. In accordance with 44 CFR 206.224(a), debris removal is eligible if there is an immediate threat to life, public health and safety, or improved property.
On March 12, 2007, the Applicant submitted its second appeal to FEMA reiterating its position presented in the first appeal.
Issues: Is debris removal that does not pose an immediate threat to life, public health and safety, or improved property from a facility that meets the USACE definition of an FCW eligible under the Public Assistance Program?
Rationale: Stafford Act, Section 403 (a)(3); 44 CFR §206.221(c); 44 CFR §206.224(a); FEMA R&R Policy 9524.3, Policy for Rehabilitation Assistance for Levees and Other Flood Control Works