U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

Official websites use .gov

A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Https

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS

A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites..

Iowa Emergency Management Division, Geographic Information System

Appeal Brief Appeal Letter Appeal Analysis

Appeal Brief

ApplicantIowa Homeland Security & Emergency Management Division
Appeal Type2nd
Date Signed1995-11-01T00:00:00
1st Appeal
• Issue
o The Applicant, Iowa Emergency Management Division, applied under disaster declaration DR-966-IA for State Management funding to complete the Iowa Geographical Information System (GIS). FEMA Region VII denied approval, the Applicant appealed, and Region VII denied the appeal.
• Reason for Denial
o The proposed use of State Management funding to complete the GIS did not meet the eligibility requirements of the HMGP provided in 44 CFR 206.439, limiting State Management funds to relief of administrative and management costs for major disasters, such as funding of State personnel salaries; and the application was not consistent with 44 CFR Section 13.22, that allowable grant costs must be necessary and reasonable for proper and efficient administration of the grant and not be a general expense required to carry out overall responsibilities of the Applicant.
• Reference(s)
o 44 CFR 206.439 HMGP Allowable Costs; 44 CFR 13.22 Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements, Allowable Costs
2nd Appeal
• Issue
o The Applicant claimed that the proposed completion of the GIS met the criteria for eligibility under 44 CFR Part 13.22, and 44 CFR, 206.439.
• FEMA Findings
o The 2nd appeal decision upheld the 1st appeal denial.
o The primary rationale for the decision was that the objectives detailed in the application were intended to benefit the State’s overall emergency management functions and responsibilities, instead of disaster-specific administrative management measures including funding of regular time salaries, applicant briefings, solicitation of projects or technical assistance. The decision stated also that the request to FEMA for State management cost funding was not made before HMGP funding was obligated, and that such a request should have identified needs consistent with the staffing requirements for HMGP grant administration described in the State’s Administrative Plan and based on the staffing pattern developed at the time of the disaster.

Appeal Letter

Federal Emergency Management Agency
Washington, D.C. 20472

November 1, 1995
 
Ms. Ellen Gordon
Administrator, Emergency Management Division
Hoover State Office Bldg.
Level A, Room 29
Des Moines, Iowa 50319

Dear Ms. Gordon:
 
This letter responds to your second level appeal requesting additional state management funds to complete the Iowa Geographical Information System (GIS). The appeal was submitted under disaster declaration FEMA-996-DR-IA for the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) under
section 404 of the Stafford Act.

You asked that I, as the Associate Director for Mitigation at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), reverse the decision of the FEMA Regional Director, Region VII, because the proposed (GIS) system meets the criteria for eligibility under 44 CFR Part 13.22, the uniform administrative requirements for grants and cooperative agreements to State and local governments, and Subpart N, 44 CFR, HMGP Allowable Costs referenced under 206.439.

After reviewing the information on the appeal, I conclude that additional funding to complete the proposed GIS system is not eligible for funding under the following HMGP regulations and grants management practices under 44 CFR Section 13.22 which references OMB authority located at OMB Circular A-87 and 44 CFR Section 206.439 as was held in the first appeal.

1. State Management funds are for funding State personnel salaries assigned to administer the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program. (44 CFR 206.439 (2) (i)) Your request to fund the cost of GIS equipment is not an eligible expense with State management funds. As stated above, State Management funds are for funding State personnel salaries only.

2. In accordance with 44 CFR Section 13.22, and as specified in OMB Circular A-87, allowable grant costs must be necessary and reasonable for proper and efficient administration of the grant and not be a general expense required to carry out the overall responsibilities of the State, or federally recognized Indian tribal governments.

After review of the mission assignment between the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and FEMA, I conclude that the objectives detailed therein are intended to benefit your State’s overall emergency management functions and responsibilities, instead of administrative management measures to support the disaster such as funding the cost of regular time salaries, applicant briefings, solicitation of projects or technical assistance to potential applicants as a result of Disaster Declaration FEMA-0996-DR-IA.
 
In addition, under 44 CFR Section 13.22 and Section 206.439, the State must request approval of state management costs from FEMA before funds are obligated. This request must be made through a letter to FEMA that provides supporting information on justification for funding. State management costs are based on the personnel needs of the state and should be consistent with the staffing requirements for administration of the HMGP as described in the state’s Administrative Plan and the staffing pattern developed at the time of the disaster.

3. The FEMA mission assignment with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is near completion and no other funding will be authorized to support or enhance the current state-of-the-art GIS already purchased.
 
The enclosed analysis discusses the rationale underlying my decision. Our review was guided by the issues raised in your appeal letter. We look forward to working with you in our efforts to reduce future damages in the State of Iowa.

Sincerely,

Richard T. Moore
Associate Director for Mitigation

Enclosure
 
 
APPEALS ANALYSIS FOR IOWA GIS EQUIPMENT
FEMA-996-DR-IA

Reason 1. State Management funds are for funding State personnel salaries assigned to administer the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (44 CFR 206.439 (2) (i)) State management funds generally represent regular time salaries and are not intended to fund overtime, per diem, and other costs that usually are covered by other administrative or project costs. HMGP Guidance on the use of State management funds dated June 2, 1993 states that “approved equipment purchases” were allowable costs which can be funded under State management costs with the approval of the Regional Director whereas in this case, has been denied by the Regional Director. Allowable equipment envisioned here is clearly administrative equipment to be used in direct support of the HMGP program management and administrative process. Further, these costs must be approved in advance, by the Regional Director. It does not appear that the request is either eligible nor was it approved in advance.

Reason 2. In accordance with 44 CFR Section 13.22, and as specified in OMB Circular A-87 allowable grant costs must be necessary and reasonable for proper and efficient administration of the grant and not be a general expense required to carry out the overall responsibilities of the State, or federally recognized Indian tribal governments.

State management costs are to be used to cover costs for personnel salaries and administrative management of mitigation measures within a particular Presidentially declared disaster; in this case, DR-996. Since the mission assignment with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for GIS support was designed to address future flood fighting, using State Management costs to cover future GIS equipment and related activities to support this effort would clearly be non-eligible. After review of the scope of work for this mission assignment, it is apparent that the equipment already purchased, including the subject equipment requested through this appeal, and the GIS activities and data products that will be produced superseded basic guidelines in the use of state management costs to administer the HMGP under DR-996.

Further analysis of the equipment already purchased is without question an excellent state-of-theart GIS base system, unlike the additional equipment requested in your appeal which appears to enhance the current base GIS system with logical network sharing devices and equipment to enhance the output capabilities of the current Iowa GIS. For this reason, I have determined that the additional equipment requested is a general expense of the Emergency Management Division which is the overall responsibility of the State.

Reason 3. The FEMA mission assignment with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is near completion and no other funding will be authorized to support or enhance the current state-of-the-art GIS already purchased with State management costs.

Your request for additional State management funding to complete the GIS is denied and the ability to utilize the data produced by the USACE mission assignment has been successful with equipment purchased thus far. Our analysis of this appeal also included speaking directly to the USACE regarding the mission assignment and desired end products, and we have been informed that this mission assignment is nearly complete and all critical data layers have been or are about to be delivered. Also, I have concluded, based on the description of equipment already purchased that your State has obtained an ideal, state-of-the-art GIS system which is clearly functional in utilizing the data end products of this mission assignment. Therefore, there should be no need for additional federal funding.

FEMA headquarters has already developed with assistance from FEMA Region VII a database with the “buyout” information of each parcel acquired through our property acquisition program. This data base includes structures or lots purchased, relocated, and elevated. This development has been on-going with the Region providing structural, financial, closing information on every parcel. This GIS system is able to spatially track and document all properties involved in the acquisition program. The database will be complete after all projects have been closed and files
documented. Once complete, the data would be available to your State if requested.

 

Appeal Analysis

Reason 1. State Management funds are for funding State personnel salaries assigned to administer the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (44 CFR 206.439 (2) (i)) State management funds generally represent regular time salaries and are not intended to fund overtime, per diem, and other costs that usually are covered by other administrative or project costs. HMGP Guidance on the use of State management funds dated June 2, 1993 states that “approved equipment purchases” were allowable costs which can be funded under State management costs with the approval of the Regional Director whereas in this case, has been denied by the Regional Director. Allowable equipment envisioned here is clearly administrative equipment to be used in direct support of the HMGP program management and administrative process. Further, these costs must be approved in advance, by the Regional Director. It does not appear that the request is either eligible nor was it approved in advance.


Reason 2. In accordance with 44 CFR Section 13.22, and as specified in OMB Circular A-87 allowable grant costs must be necessary and reasonable for proper and efficient administration of the grant and not be a general expense required to carry out the overall responsibilities of the State, or federally recognized Indian tribal governments.

State management costs are to be used to cover costs for personnel salaries and administrative management of mitigation measures within a particular Presidentially declared disaster; in this case, DR-996. Since the mission assignment with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for GIS support was designed to address future flood fighting, using State Management costs to cover future GIS equipment and related activities to support this effort would clearly be non-eligible. After review of the scope of work for this mission assignment, it is apparent that the equipment already purchased, including the subject equipment requested through this appeal, and the GIS activities and data products that will be produced superseded basic guidelines in the use of state management costs to administer the HMGP under DR-996.

Further analysis of the equipment already purchased is without question an excellent state-of-theart GIS base system, unlike the additional equipment requested in your appeal which appears to enhance the current base GIS system with logical network sharing devices and equipment to enhance the output capabilities of the current Iowa GIS. For this reason, I have determined that the additional equipment requested is a general expense of the Emergency Management Division which is the overall responsibility of the State.

Reason 3. The FEMA mission assignment with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is near completion and no other funding will be authorized to support or enhance the current state-of-the-art GIS already purchased with State management costs.

Your request for additional State management funding to complete the GIS is denied and the ability to utilize the data produced by the USACE mission assignment has been successful with equipment purchased thus far. Our analysis of this appeal also included speaking directly to the USACE regarding the mission assignment and desired end products, and we have been informed that this mission assignment is nearly complete and all critical data layers have been or are about to be delivered. Also, I have concluded, based on the description of equipment already purchased that your State has obtained an ideal, state-of-the-art GIS system which is clearly functional in utilizing the data end products of this mission assignment. Therefore, there should be no need for additional federal funding.

FEMA headquarters has already developed with assistance from FEMA Region VII a database with the “buyout” information of each parcel acquired through our property acquisition program. This data base includes structures or lots purchased, relocated, and elevated. This development has been on-going with the Region providing structural, financial, closing information on every parcel. This GIS system is able to spatially track and document all properties involved in the acquisition program. The database will be complete after all projects have been closed and files
documented. Once complete, the data would be available to your State if requested.
Last updated August 19, 2014