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Second Appeal Brief
PA ID# 000-UCPOY-00; Louisiana Department of Natural Resources
PW ID# 20449; Direct Result of Disaster
Conclusion: The requested debris removal in Lake Lery and Lake Hermitage is ineligible for Public Assistance (PA) funding because the Applicant did not establish that any debris in the two lakes is a direct result of the declared disaster, or that it poses an immediate threat.
As a result of Hurricane Katrina, debris was deposited in waterways throughout Louisiana. FEMA executed an Inter-Agency Agreement (IAA) with the United States Coast Guard (USCG) to remove eligible marine debris. The USCG identified and removed eligible debris from Lake Lery and Lake Hermitage. On August 8, 2012, the Applicant requested a new Project Worksheet (PW) for the “identification, removal, and disposal of waterborne debris” related to Hurricane Katrina from both lakes. The Applicant did not document the existence of any debris. FEMA prepared PW 20449 to address the Applicant’s request and determined the work to be ineligible because the USCG removed all Katrina-related debris that posed an immediate threat to life, public health, and safety. In its first appeal letter, the Applicant claimed that Hurricane Katrina deposited debris on the water bottoms of Lake Lery and Lake Hermitage. The Applicant reasoned that this debris should be eligible for PA funding pursuant to 44 C.F.R. § 206.224 because it continued to pose a risk to life, public health, and safety. The Applicant also claimed that the USCG did not remove all eligible debris. The Regional Administrator (RA) denied the appeal, finding that the Applicant did not include any documentation to establish the existence of any Katrina-related debris. In its second appeal, the Applicant reiterates its first appeal claims, states that FEMA did not consider its first appeal documentation, and provides a draft trip report to demonstrate the existence of Katrina-related debris.
Authorities and Second Appeals
- 44 C.F.R. § 206.223(a)(1).
- 44 C.F.R. § 206.224(a).
- 44 C.F.R. § 206.223(a)(1) provides that, to be eligible, work must be required as a direct result of the disaster.
- The Applicant has not established that any debris in the two lakes is a direct result of Hurricane Katrina. Therefore, the proposed work to identify, remove, and dispose of any debris in the two lakes is ineligible.
- According to 44 C.F.R. § 206.224(a), if debris removal is in the public interest, the RA may provide assistance for the removal of debris and wreckage from publicly and privately owned lands and waters. Debris removal is considered to be in the public interest when it is necessary to eliminate immediate threats to life, public health, and safety, or eliminate immediate threats of significant damage to improved public or private property.
- More than nine years after the declared disaster, the Applicant has not demonstrated that any debris in the lakes poses an immediate threat. Thus, the requested debris removal is ineligible.