NEW ORLEANS -- Local officials said the Federal Emergency Management Agency has needlessly dragged out the process and has not clearly defined what prices it considers reasonable.
FEMA said it audits all Katrina projects to root out waste and fraud. Millions of dollars are at stake for cash-strapped communities still struggling to rebuild.
Some communities said that if FEMA doesn't reimburse their expenses, they may have to borrow money or raises taxes to cover debris-removal contracts.
Mike Womack, director of the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, said two dozen Mississippi counties and cities could be affected.
Womack said they could lose a combined $18.4 million because FEMA questions whether they paid too much for the work.
Saturday, May 12, 2007
One story among many.
FEMA has created roadblock after roadblock to recovery. Even in Mississippi. Here's just one story about how FEMA audits are now second guessing local authorities who tried to clean up after Katrina without proper FEMA paperwork.