FEMA, Lift Station #1 Generator

JOINT FEDERAL, STATE, LOCAL PUBLIC NOTICE
July 11, 2019

The Federal Emergency Management Agency and Florida Division of Emergency Management have received the following application for Federal grant funding. Final notice is hereby given of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) consideration to provide funding in the form of Hazard Mitigation Grant Program. Funds will be provided in accordance with Section 404 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, Public Law 93-288, as amended.

Under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), federal actions must be reviewed and evaluated for feasible alternatives and for social, economic, historic, environmental, legal, and safety considerations. Under Executive Order (EO) 11988 and EO 11990 FEMA is required to consider alternatives to and to provide public notice of any proposed actions in or affecting floodplains or wetlands. EO 12898 also requires FEMA to provide the opportunity for public participation in the planning process and to consider potential impacts to minority or low-income
populations. Funding for the proposed project will be conditional upon compliance with all applicable federal, tribal, state and local laws, regulations, floodplain standards, permit requirements and conditions.

Applicant:

City of Gulfport

Project Title:

HMGP- 4337 (186) City of Gulfport, Lift Station #1 Generator

Location of Proposed Work:

The area affected by this project consists of homes in the following locations:

This project affects all homes and businesses located within the City of Gulfport with the exception of Town Shores Condominiums of Gulfport and the Pasadena Yacht and Country Club.

Proposed Work and Purpose:

The existing emergency 125kw generator was installed 22 years ago in 1996. The generator was intended to provide emergency electric power during times when normal electric service was not provided. Presently the Utilities Department provides maintenance for the existing generator. Current maintenance of running the generator on a weekly basis keeps the generator functioning. However, the electronics of the generator that is required to monitor its operation and the well flow is intermittent. This does lead to possible failure to safely operate Lift Station 1.

Under Local Mitigation Strategy Goal 1, Become a more disaster resistant community, B. Property Protection,
Objective Objective 1.6, Identify, assess, prioritize and harden critical facilities and key critical infrastructure, includes the identification of the lift stations as a critical facility. As such the City has prioritized and has been hardening the facility. In 2015, the City has spent operating funds to install hurricane resistant doors and windows. Louvers in exterior walls were removed and filled in with concrete blocks. As Irma has shown, the weakness in the Lift Station 1 is the aging emergency power generator. Break downs and failing generator electrical monitoring electrics make reliable continuous service questionable. Lift Station 1 is critical in providing sanitary sewer services to the City’s population. Providing emergency electric power to maintain the operation of Lift Station 1 is critical for the health and safety of residents, and surrounding wetlands, and the plant and animal life in Clam Bayou and Boca Ciega Bay.

The proposal herein is to mitigate current and future lift station operational down times due to the age and
maintenance of the existing generator. By upgrading the existing 125kw generator with the installation of a new 150kw generator in the exact same location with the same placement/setup as the existing generator, the 150kw generator will reduce potential negative environmental impacts currently caused by intermittent down times of the existing aged generator. The new 150 kw generator will be elevated 4 feet above the ground since the generator will be mounted on top of the fuel tank. The generator is fully enclosed which is designed to operate in a flood situation. The bottom of the generator will meet or exceed the Base Flood Elevation.

The Scope of Work involves the upgraded installation of one permanent emergency powered generator from 125 kw
to 150kw diesel powered generator at Lift Station 1. The permanent generator will provide emergency electric
power to the three wet well pumps in the lift station. The new generator will be located in the rear of the building next to the building in the same location as the existing aged generator. The existing generator and fuel tank sits on an existing concrete pad. A new pad for the proposed generator will not be necessary to construct. Due to the existing concrete pad, no digging will be required. The existing 125kw generator will be removed from the pad and upgraded with the installation of a proposed 150kw generator and fuel tank in the same location. The new 150 kw generator will be bolted on top of the fuel tank which will be bolted to the existing concrete pad and foundation. The location of the proposed permanent 150 kw generator will be in the same location where the existing generator is presently located at Lift Station #1. The proposed permanent generator and fuel tank will be bolted to the existing concrete pad and foundation.

The generator itself will be bolted down on top of the 4 foot tall fuel tank. No trenching to connect the electric lines from the proposed generator to the building will be necessary. The existing electric lines from the existing generator will be disconnected and reconnected to the new generator. Therefore, this proposed project will not involve any digging or trenching.

Project Alternatives:

The alternatives to the project that have been and will be considered are:

  1. The no action alternative and
  2. The City identified two additional alternatives to provide alternative power sources to operate Lift Station #1 if normal electric service is interrupted: Alternative 1 identifies the use of portable generators that the City currently owns and uses during emergencies. Alternative 2 identifies the purchase and use of an 80,000 kw portable generator during an emergency These alternatives to the proposed project are not viable because under Alternative 1, these generators can power lights, fans, and the electric monitoring devices of the wet well pumps, but not the wet well pumps themselves. Without the wet well pumps activated, the wet well will backup and overflow causing an environmental spill. Alternative 2 involves the purchase of a commercial grade portable 80,000 Kw portable generator. The specific for placement of the portable generator would be in the rear of Lift Station 1 next to the existing permanent generator. Power cords would be needed to connect the generator to the well pumps and monitor equipment. Fuel cans are necessary to refuel the generator. Personnel is required to guard the safety of the portable generator and to monitor the operation of the portable generator including the refueling of the generator. Labor, materials/equipment, and fuel costs will not sufficiently serve the community and will be cost prohibited. Therefore, Alternative 2 is not
    practicable.

Comment Period:

Comments are solicited from the public; local, state or federal agencies; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of the proposed project. The comments should be made in writing and addressed to the Florida Division of Emergency Management, Bureau of Mitigation, 2555 Shumard Oak Blvd., Tallahassee, FL 32399-2100. These are due within 15 days of this notice, July 11, 2019. The State will forward comments to applicable regulatory agencies as needed. Interested persons may submit comments, obtain more detailed information about the proposed action, or request a copy of the findings by contacting:

Local Contact/Title: Michael Taylor, AICP, Principal Planner (727) 893-1087
Agency: Community Development Department Email Address: mtaylor@mygulfport.us

Teresa Sanders, State Environmental Specialist (850) 815-4521
Florida Division of Emergency Management Teresa.Sanders@em.myflorida.com