WALLA WALLA, Wash. – Sponsors of flood-management facilities within the Walla Walla District which were damaged by spring flooding events that occurred April 1 through July 18 could find some help repairing their levees and related structures from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers if they submit their request for assistance by Sept. 1, according to Corps emergency management officials.
“While flash floods and similar events could still happen, the spring flood season for 2011 in the Snake River Basin is effectively over – it’s time for levee sponsors to get their paperwork in to request rehabilitation assistance,” said Jeff Stidham, District disaster response manager. “Contacting the Corps is the first step to request assistance for repairing flood-management structures that were damaged during flooding.”
The Corps of Engineers has authority under Public Law 84-99 to supplement local efforts in the repair of both federal (Corps-constructed, locally operated and maintained) and non-federal (constructed by non-federal interests or by the Work Projects Administration) flood-management projects damaged by flooding events. Several criteria must be met to satisfied eligibility, said Stidham.
The basic eligibility criteria are:
1. There must have been a verifiable flood event on the river basin(s) in your area during the defined flood season dates – this year, April 1 through July 18. “Flooding” means that flows in the basin must have been unusually high or reached a level formally defined as flooding by the National Weather Service.
2. For a non-federal flood-management project to be eligible for PL 84-99 rehabilitation assistance, it must have been inspected, evaluated and accepted into the Corps’ Rehabilitation and Inspection Program with a current “Active” status prior to the onset of the flood, and still be “Active,” based on the project’s latest Continuing Eligibility Inspection, at the time of the flood.
3. For a federal flood-management project to be eligible for PL 84-99 rehabilitation assistance, it must be in an “Active” status by having passed its last Inspection of Completed Works inspection.
4. Rehabilitation assistance will be provided by the Corps only when the work is economically justifiable, the damage was sustained during the recent flood event and the cost of repairs is more than $15,000.
If the project meets these criteria, Corps staff will conduct a brief study of the project to estimate the repair costs and determine if the work is economically justifiable.
“The great part about the PL 84-99 program is that this study is 100 percent federally funded,” Stidham noted. “Beyond that, rehabilitation assistance for a non-federal project is cost shared at 20 percent from the sponsor and 80 percent from the Corps of Engineers. Federal projects do not have a sponsor cost-share requirement.”
Under the PL 84-99 program, a flood-management project must have been inspected under the Levee Safety Program, managed by another office in the District. To minimize levee sponsors’ efforts, emergency management staff are coordinating rehabilitation requests with that office. The Corps will also be coordinating with local and state emergency management agencies, as well as the National Weather Service, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Natural Resources Conservation Service. Requesting rehabilitation assistance under PL 84-99 does not automatically enroll a levee sponsor in any separate assistance programs another agency may offer.
Levee sponsors who believe their flood-management project(s) may qualify for rehabilitation assistance should submit a written request to Walla Walla District’s Rehabilitation Assistance Project Manager Jeff Stidham at:
U.S. Army Engineer District, Walla Walla
ATTN: Emergency Management (Jeff Stidham)
201 North 3rd Avenue
Walla Walla, WA 99362
The request must be signed by an officer or responsible official of your agency, and must include:
- Name and telephone number of your point of contact;
- Legal name of the flood control project;
- Date and results of the last inspection by the Corps of Engineers;
- Location of the flood control project by township, section, range, city, and county;
- Location(s) of the damaged section(s), and extent of the damage at each location; and
- Waterway causing the flood.
Photographs are optional, but are encouraged if they are available.
Upon receipt of a request and receipt of funding from Corps higher-headquarters, District emergency management staff will schedule an inspection with the levee sponsor (often called a Public Sponsor). If you have any questions, contact Jeff Stidham at 509-527-7145, or email@example.com, for assistance.