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Second Appeal Letter
PA ID# 086-U7KTQ-00; Mount Sinai Medical Center
PW ID# 9137; Applicant Eligibility
May 15, 2012
Florida Division of Emergency Management
2555 Shumard Oak Boulevard
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-2100
Re: Second Appeal–Mount Sinai Medical Center, PA ID 086-U7KTQ-00, Applicant Eligibility, FEMA-1609-DR-FL, Project Worksheet (PW) 9137
Dear Mr. Koon:
This letter is in response to a letter from your office dated January 13, 2011, which transmitted the referenced second appeal on behalf of the Mount Sinai Medical Center (Applicant). The Applicant is appealing the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) denial of funding in the amount of $160,040 for emergency protective measures.
As part of the response to Hurricane Wilma, the Applicant incurred costs for activating its facility as a Medical Maintenance Facility during the period of October 24, 2005 through October 26, 2005. The Applicant entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Miami-Dade Office of Emergency Management (OEM) to provide such emergency services. Under the MOU, the Applicant’s facility was intended to maintain the health, safety, and well being of individuals who were medically dependent on oxygen or electricity during a disaster. On January 22, 2007, FEMA prepared PW 9137 for $160,040 to reimburse the Applicant for the cost of force account labor for operating an emergency medical shelter. The Applicant submitted force account labor information, lab fees, and other costs. The PW was written for the full number of estimated overtime hours, with the condition that all hours and costs would be verified at project close out.
At final inspection, FEMA disallowed all cost associated with the project because the work was considered an increased operating expense and not eligible for funding. The Applicant was unable to demonstrate that it operated as a separate sheltering facility during the disaster. All force account labor and other costs for this project were considered an increased operating expense and on May 20, 2009, FEMA reduced PW 9137 to zero dollars. FEMA determination did note that the OEM could submit the Applicant’s expenses for evaluation as mutual aid costs because they were operating under an MOU between the Applicant and the OEM.
The State transmitted the Applicant’s first appeal to FEMA in a letter dated April 30, 2010. The Applicant claimed it was operating as a special needs shelter under an MOU with the OEM and requested that FEMA reinstate $160,040 in funding. On September 30, 2010, the Regional Administrator denied the appeal because the Applicant was not eligible to apply for Public Assistance funds as the requesting entity, as outlined in FEMA Disaster Assistance Policy DAP9523.6, Mutual Aid Agreements for Public Assistance. The Regional Administrator also determined that costs for emergency protective measures performed by the entry may be eligible if submitted by the OEM as the requesting entity.
The Applicant submitted its second appeal on October 29, 2010, which the State forwarded to FEMA on January 13, 2011. The Applicant reiterated the claim in the first appeal that its facility was operating as an agency of the OEM and is eligible for reimbursement. The Applicant contends that the MOU establishes the Applicant as a hybrid entity of the OEM and is therefore eligible to apply for assistance on their behalf.
In Disaster Assistance Policy DAP9523.6, Mutual Aid Agreements for Public Assistance, dated September 24, 2004, “Only requesting entities are eligible applicants for FEMA public assistance.” In the MOU, the requesting entity is the OEM and the providing entity is the Applicant. In accordance with 44 CFR §206.223 (a) General Work Eligibility, “To be eligible for financial assistance, an item of work must: (3) Be the legal responsibility of an eligible applicant.” The Applicant stated that the emergency protective measures performed were at the request of the OEM, and did not demonstrate legal responsibility to independently perform these measures.
In addition, because the Applicant is a PNP, it is not eligible to apply directly to FEMA for reimbursement of its costs for labor, equipment use, and other supplies. FEMA Public Assistance Guide (FEMA 322, dated October 1999) states that “PNP operating costs for providing services are not eligible, even if increased by the disaster event. The ineligible items include labor, material, and equipment costs for providing assistance services to disaster victims, even if the services are not the same as the organization’s basic mission.” However, as determined by the Regional Administrator and in accordance with DAP9523.6, Mutual Aid Agreements for Public Assistance, the OEM may apply for reimbursement of those costs on the Applicant’s (providing entity) behalf.
I have reviewed the information submitted with the appeal and have determined that the Regional Administrator’s decision in the first appeal is consistent with Public Assistance regulations and policy. Accordingly, 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, Appeals.
cc: Major P. May
FEMA Region IV