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Direct Administrative Costs and Management Costs, Alternative Procedures

Appeal Brief Appeal Letter Appeal Analysis

Appeal Brief

Disaster3395
ApplicantFlorida Division of Emergency Management
Appeal TypeSecond
PA ID#000-U6965-00
PW ID#PW 7
Date Signed2021-09-21T16:00:00

Summary Paragraph

On October 7, 2017, Hurricane Nate impacted Escambia and Santa Rosa counties in Florida.  The Florida Division of Emergency Management (Grantee) elected to participate in the Public Assistance Alternative Procedures for Direct Administrative Costs (PAAP-DAC) program.  FEMA obligated Project Worksheet (PW) 4, a Category B project for emergency protective measures, the Grantee’s only Category A-G project for this declaration.  The period of performance (POP) for PW 4 ended on October 8, 2018.  FEMA obligated PW 5, a category Z project, to reimburse DAC associated with PW 4 in the amount of $21,420.45.  On August 20, 2019, the Grantee requested FEMA to deobligate $20,348.25 from PW 5 and allow the Grantee to use the funds in accordance with PAAP-DAC policy on “use of excess funds.”   FEMA wrote PW 7 to document this request.  FEMA issued a Determination Memorandum denying the Grantee’s request as untimely, made more than 180 days after the latest POP, for PW 4.  The Grantee appealed, asserting that FEMA should have applied the POP of PW 5, its Category Z DAC project, to calculate the timeliness of the request.  The FEMA Region IV Regional Administrator denied the first appeal, finding that under the PAAP-DAC Policy Version 1.1, the applicable POP for PW 5 (the Category Z DAC project) should equal that of the latest Category A-G project, PW 4. 

 

Authorities and Second Appeals

  • Stafford Act § 428(e)(1)(B)(ii).
  • PAAPDAC, Version 1.1, at 6-7.

Headnotes

  • Public Assistance Alternative Procedures for Direct Administrative Costs Policy Version 1.1 permits excess DAC funds to be used for any costs otherwise eligible, if the applicant identifies the excess funds and submits the request to use the funds to FEMA within 180 days of the latest project POP.  Under this policy, FEMA defines the end of the DAC PW POP as equal to the latest Category A-G PW POP.
    • The POP for PW 4 ended on October 8, 2018.  This means April 6, 2019, 180 days later, was the deadline for submitting a request to use excess DAC.  The Grantee submitted its request to use excess DAC funds on August 20, 2019, after the deadline had passed.

 

Conclusion

The Grantee submitted its request to use excess DAC more than 180 days after the POP of its latest Category A-G PW; therefore, the request was untimely.  The appeal is denied.

Appeal Letter

Kevin Guthrie

Director                                                          

Florida Division of Emergency Management

2555 Shumard Oak Blvd.                                          

Tallahassee, Florida 32399-2100

 

Re:  Second Appeal – Florida Division of Emergency Management, 000-U6965-00, FEMA-3395-EM-FL, Project Worksheet (PW) 7, Direct Administrative Costs and Management Costs, Alternative Procedures  

 

Dear Mr. Guthrie:

This is in response to your letter dated July 2, 2021, which transmitted the referenced second appeal.  The Florida Division of Emergency Management (Grantee) is appealing the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) denial of funding in the amount of $20,348.25 in reallocated Direct Administrative Costs (DAC).  

As explained in the enclosed analysis, I have determined the Grantee submitted its request to use excess DAC more than 180 days after the period of performance of its latest Category A-G PW; therefore, the request was untimely.  Therefore, this appeal is denied. 

This determination is the final decision on this matter pursuant to 44 C.F.R. § 206.206, Appeals.

 

                                                                          Sincerely,

                                                                               /S/

                                                                           Ana Montero

                                                                          Division Director

                                                                          Public Assistance Division

 

Enclosure

cc:  Gracia B. Szczech  

Regional Administrator

FEMA Region IV

Appeal Analysis

Background

On October 7, 2017, Hurricane Nate impacted Escambia and Santa Rosa counties in Florida with storm surge and rainfall causing flooding and other damage.  The President signed an emergency declaration on October 8, 2017, with an incident period of October 7-11, 2017.  On May 22, 2018, the Florida Division of Emergency Management (Grantee) elected to participate in the Public Assistance Alternative Procedures for Direct Administrative Costs (PAAP-DAC) program for the disaster.  FEMA obligated PW 4, a category B project for emergency protective measures, in the amount of $426,708.30.  The period of performance (POP) for PW 4 ended on October 8, 2018.  On July 30, 2018, FEMA obligated Project Worksheet (PW) 5, a category Z project, to reimburse DAC associated with PW 4 in the amount of $21,420.45.  On August 20, 2019, the Grantee requested FEMA deobligate $20,348.25 from PW 5 and allow the Grantee to use the funds in accordance with PAAP-DAC policy on “use of excess funds.”[1]  FEMA wrote PW 7 on October 4, 2019 to document this request.  On April 30, 2020, FEMA issued a Determination Memorandum denying the Grantee’s request as untimely.  FEMA found that the deadline to submit the request was April 6, 2019, 180 days after the latest period of performance (POP) for PW 4, and the Grantee made its request on August 20, 2019.

 

First Appeal

The Grantee submitted its first appeal on July 21, 2020, contending that FEMA erred in applying the POP of PW 4 to calculate the deadline to submit its request to reallocate excess DAC.  Instead, the Grantee argues that FEMA should have applied the POP of PW 5, its category Z DAC project, to calculate the request.  The Grantee asserts that PAAP-DAC Policy Version 1.1 treats Category Z projects the same as Category A-G projects, and that because the POP end date for PW 5 was October 8, 2019, its request was timely.  FEMA denied the appeal on May 3, 2021.  FEMA found that under the PAAP-DAC Policy Version 1.1, the applicable POP for PW 5 (the Category Z DAC project) should equal that of the latest Category A-G project, PW 4.  FEMA stated that as a result, the deadline for the Grantee to submit its request was April 6, 2019, and the request was untimely.

 

Second Appeal

The Grantee reiterates its argument on second appeal, stating that because PAAP-DAC Policy Version 1.1 treats the POP of Category Z projects the same as for Category A-G projects, FEMA should have used the POP for PW 5 to calculate the submission deadline.

 

Discussion

The Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act authorizes FEMA to provide funding for management costs to applicants based on an estimate, if the applicant elects to participate in the alternative procedure program.[2]  PAAP-DAC policy permits excess DAC funds to be used for any costs otherwise eligible, if the applicant identifies the excess funds and submits the request to use the funds to FEMA within 180 days of the latest project POP.[3]   PAAP-DAC policy defines the end of the DAC PW POP as equal to the latest Category A-G PW POP.[4]

The Grantee opted into PAAP-DAC for this disaster and had only one Category A-G PW, PW 4.  The POP for PW 4 ended on October 8, 2018.  This means April 6, 2019, 180 days later, was the deadline for submitting a request to use excess DAC funds.  The PAAP-DAC policy defines the POP for PW 5, the DAC PW, as equal to the latest Category A-G PW POP (PW 4), or April 6, 2019.  The Grantee submitted its request to use excess DAC funds on August 20, 2019, after the deadline had passed.

 

Conclusion

The Grantee submitted its request to use excess DAC funds more than 180 days after the POP of its latest Category A-G PW; therefore, the request was untimely.  The appeal is denied.

 

[1] FEMA Recovery Policy, Public Assistance Alternative Procedures for Direct Administrative Costs, Version 1.1, at 7 (June 12, 2018).  Though FEMA’s Determination Memorandum challenged the eligibility of the alternative uses the Grantee proposed for the excess DAC, FEMA’s first appeal response stated it lacked the information to determine the eligibility of the proposed alternative uses and based its decision solely on timeliness.

[2] Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance (Stafford) Act § 428(e)(1)(B)(ii), Title 42, United States Code (42 U.S.C.) § 5189f(e)(1)(B)(ii) (Supp. I 2013).

[3] FEMA Recovery Policy, Public Assistance Alternative Procedures for Direct Administrative Costs, Version 1.1, at 7 (June 12, 2018).

[4] Id. at 6.