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Second Appeal Letter
PA ID# 023-99023-00; Cameron Parish
PW ID# 4417; Hazard Mitigation Proposal
January 24, 2011
Deputy Director – Disaster Recovery
State of Louisiana
Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness
7667 Independence Boulevard
Baton Rouge, LA 70806
Re: Second Appeal – Cameron Parish, PA ID 023-99023-00, Hazard Mitigation Proposal,
FEMA-1607-DR-LA, Project Worksheet (PW) 4417 Version 4
Dear Mr. DeBosier:
This is in response to your letter dated May 13, 2010, which transmitted the referenced second appeal for Cameron Parish (Applicant). The Applicant is appealing the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) decision to deny funding for a hazard mitigation proposal (HMP) in the amount of $491,488.
In 2005, Hurricane Rita caused severe damage in Cameron Parish, including the community of Holly Beach. The Applicant requested assistance from FEMA for the repair of Egret Street, a sand beach road on the south side of the community. FEMA prepared PW 4417 to repair the road to its pre-disaster condition for $210,005. FEMA prepared Version 2 of this PW to include a HMP to anchor the roadway with sandy clay fill and crushed limestone for an additional $239,194. The Applicant requested a second HMP, which FEMA documented in PW 4417 version 4 for $491,488. This second HMP included the installation of geotextile material and 30-pound rip rap. FEMA performed a detailed analysis of this second HMP, and denied the proposal because it does not adhere to US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Publication EM 1110-2-1614 “Design of Coastal Revetments, Seawalls and Bulkheads.” According to the USACE publication, 30-pound rip rap is not sufficient to withstand wave heights over three feet. The Advisory Base Flood Elevation (ABFE) for the area of Egret Street is 10-12 feet.
The Applicant submitted its first appeal March 31, 2009, requesting approval of the second HMP for $491,488. The Regional Administrator denied the request in a letter dated August 31, 2009, because the second HMP documented in PW4417 version 4, was not an effective mitigation measure and the Applicant completed the mitigation measure prior to FEMA approval.
The Applicant submitted a second appeal March 16, 2010, and FEMA Region VI received a letter from the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness dated May 13, 2010. The second appeal requests $491,488 for hazard mitigation measures outlined in the second HMP, including geotextile material and 30-pound rip rap.
The second appeal asserts that the mitigation measures completed on Egret Street from the second HMP, PW 4417 version 4, were effective. The Applicant provides an engineering report to refute FEMA’s analysis, and argues that the mitigation measure completed with geotextile material and 30 pound rip rap limited damage from Hurricanes Gustav and Ike. Photographs were included of Egret Street before and after Hurricane Ike as evidence.
The Applicant submitted the second appeal to the State in a letter dated March 16, 2010, over six months after the State’s notification letter of the first appeal decision dated August 31, 2009. Title 44 of the Code of Federal Regulations (44 CFR) §206.206, Appeals, states that the Applicant must submit its request for a second appeal to the grantee within 60 days of receipt of the first appeal decision. In addition, FEMA Response and Recovery Policy 9526.1, Hazard Mitigation Funding Under Section 406 (Stafford Act), dated August 13, 1998, states that “FEMA must approve proposed hazard mitigation projects prior to funding.” The Applicant completed the mitigation measure prior to FEMA approval thereby jeopardizing funding for the project.
The Applicant submitted the second appeal request after the deadline and did not comply with FEMA policy to have the HMP approved prior to implementation. I have reviewed all information the Applicant submitted with the appeal and determined that the Regional Administrator’s decision in the first appeal is consistent with program regulations and policy. Accordingly, I am denying the second appeal.
Please inform the Applicant of my decision. This determination constitutes the final decision on this matter as set forth in 44 CFR §206.206, Appeals.
Acting Assistant Administrator
cc: Tony Russell
FEMA Region VI