Summary: Hurricane Hugo hit South Carolina on September 21, 1989, causing extensive damage to the State. Damage survey reports (DSRs) were prepared following the disaster, and funding for disaster-related expenses were provided accordingly. After an audit by the Office of Inspector General and subsequent meetings, the Town of Mount Pleasant was reimbursed for project management costs (PMCs) previously denied as administrative expenses. The State Public Assistance Program then issued Guidance No. 13-94 dated October 26, 1994. This guidance was prepared to notify applicant agents that their entities may be entitled to additional funding, including various project management expenses, due to the precedent set by the Mount Pleasant decision. The Charleston County School District submitted a request for additional FEMA funding for costs considered to be associated with project management activities. Although the request was submitted well beyond the allowable deadline for reporting damages, the Region accepted the request for consideration of eligibility. The costs were denied based on various program issues. The State forwarded the applicant's first appeal with a letter of transmittal dated July 18, 1997. The Regional Director upheld the determination of ineligibility on first appeal. The State forwarded the applicant's second appeal with a letter dated December 1, 1997. The primary issue of the second appeal is that some costs were not reviewed by FEMA using the same criteria as previous claims for PMCs for other applicants. The applicant contends that the costs are eligible for FEMA funding.
Are the requested PMCs eligible for FEMA funding?
Does FEMA use different criteria to evaluate requests for assistance?
No. The determinations of ineligibility for the requested funds are consistent with FEMA regulation and policy.
No. All claims are evaluated based on the Stafford Act and the regulations in place at the time of the disaster.
Rationale: The PMCs submitted do not satisfy eligibility criteria for FEMA funding as defined in the Stafford Act and 44 CFR 206.