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U.S. Senate committee to review FEMA disaster claims (Florida)

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rainbow4321 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-07-05 11:29 PM
Original message
U.S. Senate committee to review FEMA disaster claims (Florida)
Yeah..it's called the pre-election "pump money into Florida to make them think good of shrub"


http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/F/FL_HURRICANE_AID...

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) -- A U.S. Senate committee will investigate allegations that millions in fraudulent disaster aid claims were paid out by the Federal Emergency Management Agency in Florida and other states.

The Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs will examine FEMA payments following the four hurricanes that struck Florida last year and disasters in other states, according to a statement issued Thursday by Chairwoman Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Sen. Joseph Lieberman, D-Conn.

Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., wrote to Collins in October after the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported that thousands of Miami-Dade County residents had collected Hurricane Frances aid even though the storm hit 100 miles to the north. As of Tuesday, FEMA had paid $29.7 million to 12,569 residents of the county.

Nelson again wrote to Collins last month after the newspaper reported that FEMA gave more than $70 million to residents of parts of Alabama, North Carolina and other areas barely touched by disaster. Members of Congress in those states also called for a probe into the matter. "They're going to have to haul the managers in front of the committee," Nelson said Thursday.












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Skink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-07-05 11:31 PM
Response to Original message
1. There's a Senate comitee?
No way dude. :headbang:
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Oversea Visitor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-07-05 11:37 PM
Response to Original message
2. Ouch
Vote buying???
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rainbow4321 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 12:32 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. FEMA refused to release report reviews...Ohio, Michigan also questioned
Looks like Ohio and Michigan also had questionable payments...and where the hell does FEMA get off refusing to release reviews when it is taxpayer $$ that they are asking for and giving out??

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/florida/sfl-fema...


"What the Sun-Sentinel investigation shows is that not only has there been widespread fraud in Florida, but the entire FEMA payment process is infested with fraudulent payments," said U.S. Rep. Robert Wexler, D-Boca Raton. "This necessitates a redrawing of the process from start to finish, because way too much money is being wasted."

When the newspaper first reported in October on millions going to Miami-Dade residents, FEMA officials said they had adequate controls to ensure claims paid are legitimate. But the agency has a pattern of approving large amounts in areas with minimal damage.

Last year in Ohio, officials assessing the effects of severe storms in July and August identified 213 damaged residences in Cuyahoga County, which includes Cleveland. In 206 of those, the damage was described as "minor," according to Ohio Emergency Management Agency records. Yet FEMA paid $44.2 million to 30,446 Cuyahoga residents.

Hastings' bill will focus in part on FEMA inspectors who visit homes to verify damage. The government awarded five-year contracts worth $150 million each to two private companies to do the inspections. Under the contracts, the companies check inspectors' work. FEMA refuses to make the reviews public, but Burris said they do not "indicate that there's a problem."


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zann725 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 02:26 AM
Response to Original message
4. Wonder if any of this money went to other than Hurrican claims...
Edited on Sat Jan-08-05 02:35 AM by zann725
n/t
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LTRS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 07:50 AM
Response to Original message
5. Definitely vote buying
I was in FL on business in early Dec and one man told me that the Bush administration was "excellent" because they made it so easy to get the money after the hurricanes.

He described to me that you just had to go to one of the FEMA makeshift offices and fill out a very simple form and they handed you a loaded credit card (his was for $1500 dollars) with no restrictions on spending. He wasn't required to provide any tangible proof of loss or anything else. This made the Bushies heroic in his eyes.

They definitely purchased Bush votes with our tax dollars. Daddy Bush was harmed in his race against Clinton in 92 when people in Florida didn't think Daddy Bush responded quickly enough to a hurricane down there. Jr just figured he could use the opportunity to buy the votes.

Scum is what they are.
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rainbow4321 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 01:33 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. More payouts that were not needed....
http://www.sptimes.com/2005/01/04/Opinion/Fraud_finance...


The Sun-Sentinel talked to the management of one Homestead apartment complex whose residents cashed multiple FEMA checks. He told the paper that he knew of no hurricane-related damage to any of the 92 apartments. Neighbors said the FEMA money was used for cars and jewelry.

The Sun-Sentinel found that even when local emergency management officials raised alarm bells that a community should not receive any disaster relief because it was unaffected by a storm, FEMA paid out a large numbers of claims.


In Mobile County, Ala., FEMA approved $29-million in claims last year for flooding, despite being told by the county's emergency management director that the county had suffered no damage.

If Washington bureaucrats want to know why American taxpayers are sometimes grudging about trusting them to spend their money, here is a good example. Congress appropriated $8.5-billion to FEMA for hurricane relief after Florida's terrible summer. But when Americans hear that tens of millions of dollars went to areas that barely experienced a stiff breeze, they have reason to feel duped





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zann725 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-09-05 01:41 AM
Response to Reply #5
8. There were FOUR hurricanes just prior to the election?
'Natural Disasters'...and all the easy FEMA money they bring?
In Ohio too? Hmmm.
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susu369 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 09:30 AM
Response to Original message
6. Good!
Edited on Sat Jan-08-05 10:17 AM by susu369
Original message deleted by author.
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