Draft Environmental Assessment, Society of the Holy Family School, Construction of New School Facility (FEMA-1603-DR-LA), Orleans Parish, Louisiana (March 2017)
Hurricane Katrina, a Category 4 hurricane with a storm surge above normal high tide levels, moved across the Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida Gulf Coasts on August 24, 2005. Maximum sustained winds at landfall were estimated at 140 miles per hour. On August 29, 2005, President George W. Bush declared a major disaster for the State of Louisiana (FEMA-1603-DR-LA) on 29 August 2005, authorizing the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to provide federal assistance in designated areas of Louisiana. This assistance is pursuant to the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (Stafford Act), Public Law (P.L.) 93-288, as amended. Section 406 of the Stafford Act authorizes FEMA’s Public Assistance (PA) Program to assist with funding the repair, restoration, reconstruction, or replacement of public facilities damaged as a result of the declared disaster.
The Society of the Holy Family School (SOHF) has requested, through the State of Louisiana Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (LA GOHSEP), that FEMA provide disaster assistance consisting of federal grant funds in accordance with the provisions of the Stafford Act. The Society of the Holy Family has determined that repair of the damaged facilities to pre-Katrina condition would not be in the best interest of the community. Consequently, in accordance with 44 C.F.R. § 206.203(d)(1), the SOHF has requested a change of location project, which will allow funds to restore the pre-disaster function of a damaged facility. The SOHF proposes to construct a new 4,190 square foot (sf) Lafon Child Development Center in the location of the existing FEMA-funded temporary trailers on the school campus. (Latitude 30.014527, Longitude -90.007457)
In accordance with FEMA Instruction 108-1-1, a Draft Environmental Assessment (DEA) has been prepared pursuant to Section 102 of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as implemented by the regulations promulgated by the President’s Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ; 40 CFR Parts 1500-1508). (Regulations for Implementing the Procedural Provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act 2005). The purpose of this DEA is to analyze potential environmental impacts of the proposed project. FEMA will use the findings in this DEA to determine whether to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) or a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI).