Friday, December 30, 2005

Grassley goes after Red Cross records

Lawmakers intensified their scrutiny of the Red Cross on Thursday as the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee asked the organization for correspondence, minutes of board meetings and other records.

Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, questioned the effectiveness of the agency's Board of Governors in a letter requesting an array of documents. He said the review will determine "whether the current board and governance structure meets the high level of competence and engagement" that is expected of the agency.

The agency has come under fire from critics who say it failed to respond quickly enough after Hurricane Katrina. In particular, they believe the response in some low-income, minority areas was inadequate. Others have faulted it for balking at cooperation with grass-roots organizations even as it collected the bulk of hurricane relief funds.

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