US flag signifying that this is a United States Federal Government website Official website of the Department of Homeland Security

Consistent with CDC guidance, most Office of Inspector General employees are currently serving the American people remotely.  We are determined to keep interruptions to our operations to a minimum, and we appreciate your patience during this time.

Information and guidance about COVID-19 is available at

FEMA Needs to Ensure the Cost Effectiveness of $945,640 that Los Angeles County, California Spent for Hazard Mitigation Under the Public Assistance Program

Executive Summary

We reviewed $1,726,151 of costs the County claimed for one large project (Project 3095). This amount was $945,640 more than the $780,511 that FEMA initially authorized and obligated for the project. The County improperly claimed $945,640 more than the $780,511 that FEMA Region IX initially authorized to construct a wall to stabilize a damaged section of road. The County incurred the additional costs because, rather than adhere to the scope of work that FEMA authorized, it built a superior wall to lessen the susceptibility of damage that anticipated wildfires might cause in that location. FEMA Headquarters ultimately approved this funding and awarded the County both the initial $780,511 and an additional$945,640 for the already-completed project. However, FEMA Headquarters did not provide a reasonable justification for its decision and did not perform a benefit/cost analysis as required to fund mitigation measures. As a result, FEMA and taxpayers had no assurance that the mitigations work was cost effective, as Federal regulations and FEMA guidelines require.

Report Number
Issue Date
Document File
DHS Agency
Oversight Area
Fiscal Year