|FEDERAL-AID POLICY GUIDE
December 22, 1999, Transmittal 28
|49 CFR 24A|
SUBTITLE A - OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF TRANSPORTATION
PART 24 - UNIFORM RELOCATION ASSISTANCE AND REAL PROPERTY ACQUISITION FOR FEDERAL AND FEDERALLY ASSISTED PROGRAMS
Subpart A - General
24.3 No duplication of payments.
24.4 Assurances, monitoring and corrective action.
24.5 Manner of notices.
24.6 Administration of jointly-funded projects.
24.7 Federal agency waiver of regulations.
24.8 Compliance with other laws and regulations.
24.9 Recordkeeping and reports.
Authority: 42 U.S.C. 4601 et seq.; 49 CFR 1.48(cc).
[57 FR 33264, July 27, 1992]
Source: 54 FR 8928, Mar. 2, 1989 and 64 FR 7127, Feb. 12, 1999, unless otherwise noted.
Sec. 24.1 Purpose.
The purpose of this part is to promulgate rules to implement the Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act of 1970, as amended (42 U.S.C. 4601 et seq.), in accordance with the following objectives:
(b) To ensure that persons displaced as a direct result of Federal or federally-assisted projects are treated fairly, consistently, and equitably so that such persons will not suffer disproportionate injuries as a result of projects designed for the benefit of the public as a whole; and
(c) To ensure that Agencies implement these regulations in a manner that is efficient and cost effective.
[54 FR 8928, Mar. 2, 1989; 54 FR 24712, June 9, 1989]
Sec. 24.2 Definitions.
Agency. The term "Agency" means the Federal agency, State, State agency, or person that acquires real property or displaces a person.
(2) Displacing agency. The term "displacing agency" means any Federal agency carrying out a program or project, and any State, State agency, or person carrying out a program or project with Federal financial assistance, which causes a person to be a displaced person.
(3) Federal agency. The term "Federal agency" means any department, Agency, or instrumentality in the executive branch of the Government, any wholly owned Government corporation, the Architect of the Capitol, the Federal Reserve Banks and branches thereof, and any person who has the authority to acquire property by eminent domain under Federal law.
(4) State agency. The term "State agency" means any department, Agency or instrumentality of a State or of a political subdivision of a State, any department, Agency, or instrumentality of two or more States or of two or more political subdivisions of a State or States, and any person who has the authority to acquire property by eminent domain under State law.
Alien not lawfully present in the United States. The phrase "alien not lawfully present in the United States" means an alien who is not "lawfully present" in the United States as defined in 8 CFR 103.12 and includes:
(1) An alien present in the United States who has not been admitted or paroled into the United States pursuant to the Immigration and Nationality Act and whose stay in the United States has not been authorized by the United States Attorney General, and
(2) An alien who is present in the United States after the expiration of the period of stay authorized by the United States Attorney General or who otherwise violates the terms and conditions of admission, parole or authorization to stay in the United States.
Appraisal. The term "appraisal" means a written statement independently and impartially prepared by a qualified appraiser setting forth an opinion of defined value of an adequately described property as of a specific date, supported by the presentation and analysis of relevant market information.
Business. The term "business" means any lawful activity, except a farm operation, that is conducted:
(1) Primarily for the purchase, sale, lease and/or rental of personal and/or real property, and/or for the manufacture, processing, and/or marketing of products, commodities, and/or any other personal property; or
(2) Primarily for the sale of services to the public; or
(3) Primarily for outdoor advertising display purposes, when the display must be moved as a result of the project; or
(4) By a nonprofit organization that has established its nonprofit status under applicable Federal or State law.
Citizen. The term "citizen," for purposes of this part, includes both citizens of the United States and noncitizen nationals.
Comparable replacement dwelling. The term "comparable replacement dwelling" means a dwelling which is:
(1) Decent, safe and sanitary as described in paragraph (f) of this section;
(2) Functionally equivalent to the displacement dwelling. The term "functionally equivalent" means that it performs the same function, provides the same utility, and is capable of contributing to a comparable style of living. While a comparable replacement dwelling need not possess every feature of the displacement dwelling, the principal features must be present. Generally, functional equivalency is an objective standard, reflecting the range of purposes for which the various physical features of a dwelling may be used. However, in determining whether a replacement dwelling is functionally equivalent to the displacement dwelling, the Agency may consider reasonable trade-offs for specific features when the replacement unit is "equal to or better than" the displacement dwelling. (See Appendix A of this part);
(3) Adequate in size to accommodate the occupants;
(4) In an area not subject to unreasonable adverse environmental conditions;
(5) In a location generally not less desirable than the location of the displaced person's dwelling with respect to public utilities and commercial and public facilities, and reasonably accessible to the person's place of employment;
(6) On a site that is typical in size for residential development with normal site improvements, including customary landscaping. The site need not include special improvements such as outbuildings, swimming pools, or greenhouses. (See also Sec. 24.403(a)(2).);
(7) Currently available to the displaced person on the private market. However, a comparable replacement dwelling for a person receiving government housing assistance before displacement may reflect similar government housing assistance. (See Appendix A of this part.); and
(8) Within the financial means of the displaced person.
(i) A replacement dwelling purchased by a homeowner in occupancy at the displacement dwelling for at least 180 days prior to initiation of negotiations (180-day homeowner) is considered to be within the homeowner's financial means if the homeowner will receive the full price differential as described in Sec. 24.401(c), all increased mortgage interest costs as described at Sec. 24. 401(d) and all incidental expenses as described at Sec. 24.401(e), plus any additional amount required to be paid under Sec. 24.404, Replacement housing of last resort.
(ii) A replacement dwelling rented by an eligible displaced person is considered to be within his or her financial means if, after receiving rental assistance under this part, the person's monthly rent and estimated average monthly utility costs for the replacement dwelling do not exceed the person's base monthly rental for the displacement dwelling as described at Sec. 24.402(b)(2).
(iii) For a displaced person who is not eligible to receive a replacement housing payment because of the person's failure to meet length-of-occupancy requirements, comparable replacement rental housing is considered to be within the person's financial means if an Agency pays that portion of the monthly housing costs of a replacement dwelling which exceeds 30 percent of such person's gross monthly household income or, if receiving a welfare assistance payment from a program that designates amounts for shelter and utilities, the total of the amounts designated for shelter and utilities. Such rental assistance must be paid under Sec. 24.404, Replacement housing of last resort.
Contribute materially. The term "contribute materially" means that during the 2 taxable years prior to the taxable year in which displacement occurs, or during such other period as the Agency determines to be more equitable, a business or farm operation:
(1) Had average annual gross receipts of at least $5000; or
(2) Had average annual net earnings of at least $1000; or
(3) Contributed at least 33 1/3 percent of the owner's or operator's average annual gross income from all sources.
(4) If the application of the above criteria creates an inequity or hardship in any given case, the Agency may approve the use of other criteria as determined appropriate.
Decent, safe, and sanitary dwelling. The term "decent, safe, and sanitary dwelling" means a dwelling which meets applicable housing and occupancy codes. However, any of the following standards which are not met by an applicable code shall apply unless waived for good cause by the Federal agency funding the project. The dwelling shall:
(1) Be structurally sound, weathertight, and in good repair.
(2) Contain a safe electrical wiring system adequate for lighting and other devices.
(3) Contain a heating system capable of sustaining a healthful temperature (of approximately 70 degrees) for a displaced person, except in those areas where local climatic conditions do not require such a system.
(4) Be adequate in size with respect to the number of rooms and area of living space needed to accommodate the displaced person. There shall be a separate, well lighted and ventilated bathroom that provides privacy to the user and contains a sink, bathtub or shower stall, and a toilet, all in good working order and properly connected to appropriate sources of water and to a sewage drainage system. In the case of a housekeeping dwelling, there shall be a kitchen area that contains a fully usable sink, properly connected to potable hot and cold water and to a sewage drainage system, and adequate space and utility service connections for a stove and refrigerator.
(5) Contains unobstructed egress to safe, open space at ground level. If the replacement dwelling unit is on the second story or above, with access directly from or through a common corridor, the common corridor must have at least two means of egress.
(6) For a displaced person who is handicapped, be free of any barriers which would preclude reasonable ingress, egress, or use of the dwelling by such displaced person.
Displaced person. (1) General. The term "displaced person" means, except as provided in paragraph (2) of this definition, any person who moves from the real property or moves his or her personal property from the real property: (This includes a person who occupies the real property prior to its acquisition, but who does not meet the length of occupancy requirements of the Uniform Act as described at Secs. 24.401(a) and 24.402(a)):
(i) As a direct result of a written notice of intent to acquire, the initiation of negotiations for, or the acquisition of, such real property in whole or in part for a project.
(ii) As a direct result of rehabilitation or demolition for a project; or
(iii) As a direct result of a written notice of intent to acquire, or the acquisition, rehabilitation or demolition of, in whole or in part, other real property on which the person conducts a business or farm operation, for a project. However, eligibility for such person under this paragraph applies only for purposes of obtaining relocation assistance advisory services under Sec. 24.205(c), and moving expenses under Secs. 24.301, 24.302 or 24.303.
(2) Persons not displaced. The following is a nonexclusive listing of persons who do not qualify as displaced persons under this part:
(i) A person who moves before the initiation of negotiations (see also Sec. 24.403(d)), unless the Agency determines that the person was displaced as a direct result of the program or project; or
(ii) A person who initially enters into occupancy of the property after the date of its acquisition for the project; or
(iii) A person who has occupied the property for the purpose of obtaining assistance under the Uniform Act;
(iv) A person who is not required to relocate permanently as a direct result of a project. Such determination shall be made by the Agency in accordance with any guidelines established by the Federal agency funding the project (see Also Appendix A of this part); or
(v) An owner-occupant who moves as a result of an acquisition as described at Sec. 24.101(a) (1) and (2) , or as a result of the rehabilitation or demolition of the real property. (However, the displacement of a tenant as a direct result of any acquisition, rehabilitation or demolition for a Federal or federally-assisted project is subject to this part.); or
(vi) A person whom the Agency determines is not displaced as a direct result of a partial acquisition; or (vii) A person who, after receiving a notice of relocation eligibility (described at Sec. 24.203(b)), is notified in writing that he or she will not be displaced for a project. Such notice shall not be issued unless the person has not moved and the Agency agrees to reimburse the person for any expenses incurred to satisfy any binding contractual relocation obligations entered into after the effective date of the notice of relocation eligibility; or
(viii) An owner-occupant who voluntarily conveys his or her property, as described at Sec. 24.101(a) (1) and (2), after being informed in writing that if a mutually satisfactory agreement on terms of the conveyance cannot be reached, the Agency will not acquire the property. In such cases, however, any resulting displacement of a tenant is subject to the regulations in this part; or
(ix) A person who retains the right of use and occupancy of the real property for life following its acquisition by the Agency; or
(x) An owner who retains the right of use and occupancy of the real property for a fixed term after its acquisition by the Department of Interior under Pub. L. 93-477 or Pub. L. 93-303, except that such owner remains a displaced person for purposes of subpart D of this part; or
[58 FR 26070, April 30, 1993, (effective date June 1, 1993)]
(xi) A person who is determined to be in unlawful occupancy prior to the initiation of negotiations (see paragraph (y) of this section), or a person who has been evicted for cause, under applicable law, as provided for in Sec. 24.206.
(xii) A person who is not lawfully present in the United States and who has been determined to be ineligible for relocation benefits in accordance with Sec. 24.208.
Dwelling. The term "dwelling" means the place of permanent or customary and usual residence of a person, according to local custom or law, including a single family house; a single family unit in a two-family, multi-family, or multi-purpose property; a unit of a condominium or cooperative housing project; a non-housekeeping unit; a mobile home; or any other residential unit.
Farm operation. The term "farm operation" means any activity conducted solely or primarily for the production of one or more agricultural products or commodities, including timber, for sale or home use, and customarily producing such products or commodities in sufficient quantity to be capable of contributing materially to the operator's support.
Federal financial assistance. The term "Federal financial assistance" means a grant, loan, or contribution provided by the United States, except any Federal guarantee or insurance and any interest reduction payment to an individual in connection with the purchase and occupancy of a residence by that individual.
Initiation of negotiations. Unless a different action is specified in applicable Federal program regulations, the term "initiation of negotiations" means the following:
(1) Whenever the displacement results from the acquisition of the real property by a Federal agency or State agency, the "initiation of negotiations" means the delivery of the initial written offer of just compensation by the Agency to the owner or the owner's representative to purchase the real property for the project. However, if the Federal agency or State agency issues a notice of its intent to acquire the real property, and a person moves after that notice, but before de1ivery to the initial written purchase offer, the "initiation of negotiations" means the actual move of the person from the property.
(2) Whenever the displacement is caused by rehabilitation, demolition or privately undertaken acquisition of the real property (and there is no related acquisition by a Federal agency or a State agency), the "initiation of negotiations" means the notice to the person that he or she will be displaced by the project or, if there is no notice, the actual move of the person from the property.
(3) In the case of a permanent relocation to protect the public health and welfare, under the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-510, or "Superfund") the "initiation of negotiations" means the formal announcement of such relocation or the Federal or federally-coordinated health advisory where the Federal Government later decides to conduct a permanent relocation.
Lead agency. The term "lead agency" means the Department of Transportation acting through the Federal Highway Administration.
Mortgage. The term "mortgage" means such classes of liens as are commonly given to secure advances on, or the unpaid purchase price of, real property, under the laws of the State in which the real property is located, together with the credit instruments, if any, secured thereby.
Nonprofit organization. The term "nonprofit organization" means an organization that is incorporated under the applicable laws of a State as a non-profit organization, and exempt from paying Federal income taxes under section 501 of the Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. 501).
Notice of intent to acquire or notice of eligibility for relocation assistance. Written notice furnished to a person to be displaced, including those to be displaced by rehabilitation or demolition activities from property acquired prior to the commitment of Federal financial assistance to the activity, that establishes eligibility for relocation benefits prior to the initiation of negotiation and/or prior to the commitment of Federal financial assistance.
Owner of a dwelling. A person is considered to have met the requirement to own a dwelling if the person purchases or holds any of the following interests in real property;
(1) Fee title, a life estate, a land contract, a 99-year lease, or a lease including any options for extension with at least 50 years to run from the date of acquisition; or
(2) An interest in a cooperative housing project which includes the right to occupy a dwelling; or
(3) A contract to purchase any of the interests or estates described in paragraphs (p) (1) or (2) of this section, or
(4) Any other interest, including a partial interest, which in the judgment of the Agency warrants consideration as ownership.
Person. The term "person" means any individual, family, partnership, corporation, or association.
Program or project. The phrase "program or project" means any activity or series of activities undertaken by a Federal agency or with Federal financial assistance received or anticipated in any phase of an undertaking in accordance with the Federal funding agency guidelines.
Salvage value. The term "salvage value" means the probable sale price of an item, if offered for sale on the condition that it will be removed from the property at the buyer's expense, allowing a reasonable period of time to find a person buying with knowledge of the uses and purposes for which it is adaptable and capable of being used, including separate use of serviceable components and scrap when there is no reasonable prospect of sale except on that basis.
Small business. A business having not more than 500 employees working at the site being acquired or displaced by a program or project, which site is the location of economic activity. Sites occupied solely by outdoor advertising signs, displays, or devices do not qualify as a business for purposes of Sec. 24.304.
[58 FR 26070, April 30, 1993, (effective date June 1, 1993)]
State. Any of the several States of the United States or the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, any territory or possession of the United States, or a political subdivision of any of these jurisdictions.
Tenant. The term "tenant" means a person who has the temporary use and occupancy of real property owned by another.
Uneconomic remnant. The term "uneconomic remnant" means a parcel of real property in which the owner is left with an interest after the partial acquisition of the owner's property, and which the acquiring agency has determined has little or no value or utility to the owner.
Uniform Act. The term "Uniform Act" means the Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policy Act of 1970 (84 Stat. 1894; 42 U.S.C. 4601 et seq.; Pub. L. 91-646), and amendments thereto.
Unlawful occupancy. A person is considered to be in unlawful occupancy if the person has been ordered to move by a court of competent jurisdiction prior to the initiation of negotiations or is determined by the Agency to be a squatter who is occupying the real property without the permission of the owner and otherwise has no legal right to occupy the property under State law. A displacing agency may, at its discretion, consider such a squatter to be in lawful occupancy.
Utility costs. The term "utility costs" means expenses for heat, lights, water and sewer.
Utility facility. The term "utility facility" means any electric, gas, water, steampower, or materials transmission or distribution system; any transportation system; any communications system, including cable television; and any fixtures, equipment, or other property associated with the operation, maintenance, or repair of any such system. A utility facility may be publicly, privately, or cooperatively owned.
Utility relocation. The term "utility relocation" means the adjustment of a utility facility required by the program or project undertaken by the displacing agency. It includes removing and reinstalling the facility, including necessary temporary facilities; acquiring necessary right-of-way on new location; moving, rearranging or changing the type of existing facilities; and taking any necessary safety and protective measures. It shall also mean constructing a replacement facility that has the functional equivalency of the existing facility and is necessary for the continued operation of the utility service, the project economy, or sequence of project construction.
[54 FR 8928, Mar. 2, 1989; 54 FR 24712, June 9, 1989]
Sec. 24.3 No duplication of payments.
No person shall receive any payment under this part if that person receives a payment under Federal, State, or local law which is determined by the Agency to have the same purpose and effect as such payment under this part. (See Appendix A of this part, Sec. 24.3.)
Sec. 24.4 Assurances, monitoring and corrective action.
(a) Assurances--(1) Before a Federal agency may approve any grant to, or contract, or agreement with, a State agency under which Federal financial assistance will be made available for a project which results in real property acquisition or displacement that is subject to the Uniform Act, the State agency must provide appropriate assurances that it will comply with the Uniform Act and this part. A displacing agency's assurances shall be in accordance with section 210 of the Uniform Act. An acquiring agency's assurances shall be in accordance with section 305 of the Uniform Act and must contain specific reference to any State law which the Agency believes provides an exception to section 301 or 302 of the Uniform Act. If, in the judgment of the Federal agency, Uniform Act compliance will be served, a State agency may provide these assurances at one time to cover all subsequent federally-assisted programs or projects. An Agency which both acquires real property and displaces persons may combine its section 210 and section 305 assurances in one document.
(2) If a Federal agency or State agency provides Federal financial assistance to a "person" causing displacement, such Federal or State agency is responsible for ensuring compliance with the requirements of this part, notwithstanding the person's contractual obligation to the grantee to comply.
(3) As an alternative to the assurance requirement described in paragraph (a)(1) of this section, a Federal agency may provide Federal financial assistance to a State agency after it has accepted a certification by such State agency in accordance with the requirements in Subpart G of this part.
(b) Monitoring and corrective action. The Federal agency will monitor compliance with this part, and the State agency shall take whatever corrective action is necessary to comply with the Uniform Act and this part. The Federal agency may also apply sanctions in accordance with applicable program regulations. (Also see Sec. 24.603, Subpart G.)
(c) Prevention of fraud, waste, and mismanagement. The Agency shall take appropriate measures to carry out this part in a manner that minimizes fraud, waste, and mismanagement.
Sec. 24.5 Manner of notices.
Each notice which the Agency is required to provide to a property owner or occupant under this part, except the notice described at Sec. 24.102(b), shall be personally served or sent by certified or registered first-class mail, return receipt requested, and documented in Agency files. Each notice shall be written in plain, understandable language. Persons who are unable to read and understand the notice must be provided with appropriate translation and counseling. Each notice shall indicate the name and telephone number of a person who may be contacted for answers to questions or other needed help.
Sec. 24.6 Administration of jointly-funded projects.
Whenever two or more Federal agencies provide financial assistance to an Agency or Agencies, other than a Federal agency, to carry out functionally or geographically related activities which will result in the acquisition of property or the displacement of a person, the Federal agencies may by agreement designate one such agency as the cognizant Federal agency. In the unlikely event that agreement among the Agencies cannot be reached as to which agency shall be the cognizant Federal agency, then the lead agency shall designate one of such agencies to assume the cognizant role. At a minimum, the agreement shall set forth the federally assisted activities which are subject to its terms and cite any policies and procedures, in addition to this part, that are applicable to the activities under the agreement. Under the agreement, the cognizant Federal agency shall assure that the project is in compliance with the provisions of the Uniform Act and this part. All federally assisted activities under the agreement shall be deemed a project for the purposes of this part.
Sec. 24.7 Federal agency waiver of regulations.
The Federal agency funding the project may waive any requirement in this part not required by law if it determines that the waiver does not reduce any assistance or protection provided to an owner or displaced person under this part. Any request for a waiver shall be justified on a case-by-case basis.
Sec. 24.8 Compliance with other laws and regulations.
The implementation of this part must be in compliance with other applicable Federal laws and implementing regulations, including, but not limited to, the following:
(a) Section I of the Civil Rights Act of 1866 (42 U.S.C. 1982 et seq.).
(b) Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000d et seq.). (c) Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 (42 U.S.C. 3601 et seq.), as amended.
(d) The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.).
(e) Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 790 et seq.).
(f) The Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973 (Pub. L. 93-234).
(g) The Age Discrimination Act of 1975 (42 U.S.C. 6101 et seq.).
(h) Executive Order 11063--Equal Opportunity and Housing, as amended by Executive Order l2259.
(i) Executive Order 11246--Equal Employment Opportunity.
(j) Executive Order 11625-Minority Business Enterprise.
(k) Executive Orders 11988, Floodplain Management, and 11990, Protection of Wetlands.
(l) Executive Order 12250--Leadership and Coordination of Non-Discrimination Laws.
(m) Executive Order 12259--Leadership and Coordination of Fair Housing in Federal Programs.
(n) Executive Order 12630--Governmental Actions and Interference with Constitutionally Protected Property Rights.
Sec. 24.9 Recordkeeping and reports.
(a) Records. The Agency shall maintain adequate records of its acquisition and displacement activities in sufficient detail to demonstrate compliance with this part. These records shall be retained for at least 3 years after each owner of a property and each person displaced from the property receives the final payment to which he or she is entitled under this part, or in accordance with the applicable regulations of the Federal funding agency, whichever is later.
(b) Confidentiality of records. Records maintained by an Agency in accordance with this part are confidential regarding their use as public information, unless applicable law provides otherwise.
(c) Reports. The Agency shall submit a report of its real property acquisition and displacement activities under this part if required by the Federal agency funding the project. A report will not be required more frequently than every 3 years, or as the Uniform Act provides, unless the Federal funding agency shows good cause. The report shall be prepared and submitted in the format contained in Appendix B of this part.
Sec. 24.10 Appeals.
(a) General. The Agency shall promptly review appeals in accordance with the requirements of applicable law and this part.
(b) Actions which may be appealed. Any aggrieved person may file a written appeal with the Agency in any case in which the person believes that the Agency has failed to properly consider the person's application for assistance under this part. Such assistance may include, but is not limited to, the person's eligibility for, or the amount of, a payment required under Sec. 24.106 or Sec. 24.107, or a relocation payment required under this part. The Agency shall consider a written appeal regardless of form.
(c) Time limit for initiating appeal. The Agency may set a reasonable time limit for a person to file an appeal. The time limit shall not be less than 60 days after the person receives written notification of the Agency's determination on the person's claim.
(d) Right to representation. A person has a right to be represented by legal counsel or other representative in connection with his or her appeal, but solely at the person's own expense.
(e) Review of files by person making appeal. The Agency shall permit a person to inspect and copy all materials pertinent to his or her appeal, except materials which are classified as confidential by the Agency. The Agency may, however, impose reasonable conditions on the person's right to inspect, consistent with applicable laws.
(f) Scope of review of appeal. In deciding an appeal, the Agency shall consider all pertinent justification and other material submitted by the person, and all other available information that is needed to ensure a fair and full review of the appeal.
(g) Determination and notification after appeal. Promptly after receipt of all information submitted by a person in support of an appeal, the Agency shall make a written determination on the appeal, including an explanation of the basis on which the decision was made, and furnish the person a copy. If the full relief requested is not granted, the Agency shall advise the person of his or her right to seek judicial review.
(h) Agency official to review appeal. The Agency official conducting the review of the appeal shall be either the head of the Agency or his or her authorized designee. However, the official shall not have been directly involved in the action appealed.