Appeal Brief | Appeal Letter | Back
Second Appeal Letter
PA ID# 139-47138-00; City of Mansfield
PW ID# Project Worksheet 372; Replacement of Traffic Signal Controllers
April 6, 2009
Nancy Dragani Governor's Authorized Representative Ohio Emergency Management Agency 2855 West Dubin-Granville Road
Columbus, Ohio 43235
Re: Second AppealCity of Mansfield, PA ID 139-47138-00, Replacement of Traffic Signal Controllers
, FEMA-1720-DR-OH, Project Worksheet (PW) 372
Dear Ms. Dragani:
This letter is in response to your letter dated August 19, 2008, which transmitted the referenced second appeal on behalf of the City of Mansfield (Applicant). The Applicant is appealing the Department of Homeland Securitys Federal Emergency Management Agencys (FEMA) denial of $56,022 for the replacement of five traffic signal controllers located on Federal-aid routes.BACKGROUND
Heavy rainfall and winds from Tropical Storm Erin in August 2007 severely damaged five traffic signal controllers on Federal-aid routes. The Applicant requested assistance from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). FHWA denied the Applicants request because the disaster damage did not meet its $700,000 damage threshold to qualify for assistance under FHWAs Emergency Relief Program (ER). In response to the Applicants request for assistance, FEMA prepared PW 372 for $56,022 to replace the five traffic signal controllers. However, following a review of the PW, FEMA determined that the work was ineligible because it was under the specific authority of FHWA.
By a letter dated March 24, 2008, the Applicant submitted its first appeal. The Applicant stated that the intent of Section 312 of the Stafford Act and 44 CFR §206.226(a)(1) is to prevent a duplication of benefits. The Applicant argued that since the amount of damage to the Federal-aid routes did not qualify for the FHWA ER program, there could not be any duplication of benefits. In a letter dated May 28, 2008, the Regional Administrator denied the Applicants first appeal, reiterating the initial determination that the work was ineligible because it was under the specific authority of the FHWA.Second Appeal
In its second appeal, dated August 7, 2008, the Applicant reiterated its arguments from the first appeal, stating that the Congressional intent of Section 312 of the Stafford Act and 44 CFR §206.226(a)(1) was to prevent a duplication of benefits and that no duplication of benefits occurred. In addition, the Applicant added that FEMA has written flexibility into its regulation at 44 CFR §206.226(a)(1) to fund projects when projects are under the specific authority of another Federal Agency.CONCLUSION
Section 102 of the Stafford Act defines a public facility in part as
Any non-Federal-aid street, road, or highway
. We interpret this to mean that a Federal-aid street, road, or highway is not an eligible public facility under the Public Assistance Program and that FEMA does not have statutory authority to repair Federal-aid streets, roads, and highways. FHWA has statutory authority to repair Federal-aid streets, roads, and highways. Therefore, the replacement of five traffic signal controllers along Federal-aid routes is not eligible for funding by FEMA in accordance with Section 102 of the Stafford Act. As a result, I am denying the second appeal.
Please inform the Applicant of my decision. This determination is the final decision on this matter pursuant to 44 CFR §206.206.
James A. Walke Acting Assistant Administrator Disaster Assistance Directorate
cc: Janet Odeshoo Acting Regional Administrator FEMA Region V