Wednesday, September 5, 2007

In the "What Goes Round Comes Round" Department

FEMA to Let Katrina Victims Move From Trailers Into Hotels
By Spencer S. Hsu Washington Post Staff Writer Wednesday, September 5, 2007; A03
The Federal Emergency Management Agency announced yesterday that it will allow 60,000 families displaced by Hurricane Katrina and now living in FEMA-provided trailers on the Gulf Coast to move into hotel or motel rooms if they are concerned about formaldehyde gas in their trailers.
The policy shift, made two weeks ago but not widely publicized until now, follows a House committee finding in July that FEMA leaders had suppressed warnings about the presence of high levels of potentially cancer-causing formaldehyde, apparently to avoid legal liability.
The announcement brings full circle FEMA's costly and troubled housing response to the Katrina disaster. The agency hastily ordered $2.7 billion in manufactured housing, mostly through no-bid contracts, only to discover later that FEMA rules prevented the use of a third of the purchases in flood zones, where most victims lived, and that local communities would refuse to host large trailer encampments.
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Maybe Brownie wasn't such a jerk after all.
Michael Chertoff is obviously so far in over his head (or with it up someone's ass) that he's no longer qualified for any position other than Attorney General.

* For more in-depth articles by Jim on Homeland Security, check out Opinion-Columns.com