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Second Appeal Analysis
PA ID# 045-0C5D4-00; Brooktrails Township Community Services District
PW ID# Project Worksheet 149; Net Small Project Overrun
Brooktrails Township Community Services District, PA ID 045-0C5D4-00
Net Small Project Overrun, Project Worksheet (PW) 149
The severe storms, flooding, mudslides, and landslides that occurred during the period from December 17, 2005, through and including January 3, 2006, damaged several facilities in Brooktrails Township Community Services District (Applicant). FEMA prepared and approved a total of six Small Project Worksheets (PWs) for the Applicant, most of which were one hundred percent complete at the time of inspection. The subject of this second appeal, PW 149, was developed for the access road leading to a remote water storage tank (referred to by the Applicant as Water Tank Number 9) and was zero percent complete at the time of the initial inspection. Ground saturation caused embankment slippage and washout damage to the paved road surface and aggregate base course. FEMA approved PW 149 in the amount of $19,605 to repair the road, including removal and disposal of slide loose material and damaged asphalt concrete, placement of riprap slope protection in place of the removed material, and restoration of 65 feet of road surface. The Applicant, upon the advice and design of an engineering firm, moved the road alignment closer to the cut bank, which required the replacement of a longer section of roadway (140 feet) than originally approved. In addition, the Applicant installed a drainage inlet and 46 linear feet of 18-inch storm drain. The total cost of the project was $31,966, a difference of $12,361 from the original repair estimate. The Applicant did not inform the California Governors Office of Emergency Services (Grantee) or FEMA of the proposed change in scope or cost until the time of final inspection, when all work was complete. There are a total of six small projects for this Applicant. At the final small projects close out there were no adjustments to PWs 143, 145, 146, and 150. However, FEMA verified a cost underrun of $925 for PW 148 v2 and a cost overrun for PW 149, resulting in a net overrun of $12,361First Appeal
Pursuant to 44 CFR §206.204, Project performance
, the Applicant requested a Net Small Project Overrun through the Grantee in the form of a first appeal. On May 16, 2008, the Regional Administrator denied the appeal stating that the Applicant did not submit any documentation to justify the change in the original scope of work and that the actual work the Applicant performed was an improvement to the pre-disaster design. As an Improved Project, pursuant to 44 CFR §206.203, Federal grant assistance
, the Regional Administrator limited approved funding to the Federal share of the approved estimate of eligible costs. The Regional Administrator also conducted the appropriate reviews of the actual work performed to ensure compliance with environmental laws and regulations. The Applicant complied with applicable laws and executive orders.Second Appeal
On September 30, 2008, the Grantee forwarded a second appeal from the Applicant recommending that the cost overrun of $12,361 be approved. Documentation supporting this recommendation includes a letter from the Applicants engineering firm stating that moving the roadway rather than performing the slide repair, as originally proposed by FEMA, was less expensive.Discussion
Pursuant to 44 CFR §206.203, Federal grant assistance
, if an Applicant chooses to make improvements, but restore the pre-disaster function of a damaged facility, it must obtain approval from the Grantee prior to construction. Furthermore, any Improved Project that results in a significant change from the pre-disaster configuration (i.e., different location, footprint, size) of the facility must also be approved by FEMA prior to construction. The road repair performed by the Applicant, which included moving the road alignment and installing new drainage features, is considered a significant change to the pre-disaster configuration of the roadway. The Applicant did not obtain approval for this change from either the Grantee or FEMA prior to construction.
Additionally, the Applicant has requested retroactive approval of its actual costs, claiming that the work performed was more cost effective than repairing the road in place and restoring the embankment. The Applicants engineering firms letter dated, June 16, 2008, states that the Applicant chose to move the road alignment closer to the cut bank in order to place it on more stable material. In a follow-up letter, dated September 25, 2008, the engineering firm states that the slide repair (as contemplated by FEMA) would have involved additional geotechnical analysis and most likely would have required additional slide repair items, such as sub-excavation, sub-drain and permeable blanket placement, and replacement and re-compaction of slide material. The Applicant, however, did not provide any analysis or cost estimate to support this claim. In addition, there is no indication that there have been repetitive damages at the site that might have justified moving the road location. The Applicant has not provided documentation to justify the claim that the work performed was more cost effective than FEMAs approved scope of work. As such, FEMA considers PW 149 an Improved Project in accordance with 44 CFR §206.203, which limits Federal funding to the Federal share of the approved estimate of eligible costs.
The approved estimate of eligible costs for PW 149 was $19,605. Upon review of this second appeal, however, FEMA has found that additional repair elements should have been included in the original scope of work. These additional elements are required to restore the roadway to its pre-disaster condition and incorporate sound engineering practices. Given the amount of embankment damage caused by this event (approximately 433 cubic yards of slide material), a limited geotechnical investigation should have been considered eligible in order to identify the cause of the failure and provide a practicable scope of work and potential cost-effective alternative(s).
Absent an actual geotechnical investigation, FEMA must rely on the initial site inspection and damage description as the basis for any additional eligible work. FEMA has reviewed the Applicants claims for additional items, such as sub-excavation and sub-drainage, considering standard engineering practices in accordance with FEMA guidelines for permanent repairs, 44 CFR §206.226, Restoration of damaged facilities
. Based on the information available, drop inlets and drainage pipes are considered above and beyond that which was necessary to restore the road to its pre-disaster design.
However, the following new items and/or modifications can reasonably be added to the original scope of work to account for sound engineering practices:
To ensure stability of the aggregate (i.e., separation, drainage, and reinforcement), geo-textile fabric to cover the slide area and roadway sections of the entire excavated area
To restore to the original profile and grade and provide for sub-drainage, replacement of the slide material with a mix of ½ ton riprap and aggregate base course on the slope in 18-inch lifts to 95 percent modified proctor density compaction (rather than dumping riprap as fill for the entire excavated area)
To help stabilize the slope, minimize sediment runoff, and control erosion, reconstruction of the slope with a reinforced turf mat (RTM) and hydro-seeding
Based on the original PW 149 damage description, dimensions, and unit prices, the new cost estimate for the eligible scope of work, including the repstg>Quantity Unit Unit Price Cost Estimate
1 9999 Geotechnical investigation (limited) 1 LS $2,500.00 $2,500.00
2 3150 Pavement removal 86.67 SY $15.00 $1,300.05
3 9999 Removal of sliding material 433.33 CY $5.01 $2,170.98
4 1052 Dump Disposal (dump charges) 4.81 CY $27.00 $129.87
5 9999 Geo-textile fabric (roadway)* 86.67 SY $1.26 $109.20
6 9999 Geo-textile fabric (slope)* 238.33 SY $2.12 $505.26
7 3251 ½ ton Riprap - structural fill 260 CY $34.00 $8,840.00
8 3091 Aggregate base course - structural fill 173.33 CY $40.00 $6,933.20
9 3091 Aggregate base course (6) 14.44 CY $40.00 $577.60
10 9999 Placing 2 bituminous concrete 11.56 Ton $60.00 $693.60
11 9999 Slope stabilization (RTM, hydro seeding)** 216.67 SY $9.16 $1,984.70Total $25,744.46* Unit price based on 2006 RS Means and adjusted for local area using the site construction index.** Unit price based on 2008 RS Means, adjusted for local area using the site construction index and construction costs indices (Washington State Department of Transportation).CONCLUSION
As stated above, the Applicant made improvements to the access road by re-routing the road and repaving a longer section than was damaged by the declared event without providing sufficient justification for the change in scope. As such, this project is an Improved Project pursuant to 44 CFR §206.203, Federal grant assistance
, in which Federal funding is limited to the Federal share of the approved estimate of eligible costs. However, additional items of work are eligible based on sound engineering practices, in accordance with 44 CFR §206.226, Restoration of damaged facilities
, increasing the approved estimate of eligible costs to $25,744. For these reasons, an additional $5,209 ($6,134 minus $925 cost underrun adjustment) is approved for the repair of the access road to the remote water tank (Water Tank Number 9).