Watchdog: FEMA wrongly released personal data of victims
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Emergency Management Agency wrongly released to a contractor the personal information of 2.3 million survivors of devastating 2017 hurricanes and wildfires,...
King: Katrina victims only asked for help, unlike Iowans
WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican Steve King says he was told that victims of Hurricane Katrina only asked for help, unlike people in his home state of Iowa, who "take care of each other."
Nebraska files expedited request for disaster assistance
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts has submitted an expedited request to the federal government for disaster assistance in the wake of historic flooding in the state.
At FEMA office, federal workers say they’re here to help
EAGLE RIVER, Alaska (AP) — At a small office in an Eagle River church, nearly a dozen federal employees are working to both mitigate problems and manage expectations of those seeking help after...
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The federal government has rejected $306 million in reimbursements for California's repair of damaged spillways on the nation's tallest dam, a state agency said...
Woman gets 1 year, 1 months for FEMA fraud
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — A Florida woman has been sentenced to one year and three months in prison for lying on an application seeking disaster relief benefits following Hurricane Irma.
NYC reaches $5.3M settlement over Sandy FEMA funds
NEW YORK (AP) — New York City has reached a $5.3 million settlement over charges it improperly billed the Federal Emergency Management Agency for damage to city vehicles caused by Superstorm...
Trump picks former Alabama official to lead FEMA
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump says he will nominate a former Alabama official to head the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Jeffrey Byard held several positions with the Alabama Emergency Management Agency before he joined FEMA in 2017 during the agency's response to Hurricanes Harvey in Texas and Irma in Florida. Byard is currently the associate administrator for the Office of Response and Recovery.
West Virginia woman pleads guilty to taking disaster funds
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A West Virginia woman has pleaded guilty to embezzling thousands of dollars of disaster benefits from the Federal Emergency Management Agency after heavy flooding more than two years ago.
The U.S. attorney's office says 57-year-old Pamela Taylor of Clay County on Tuesday admitted to falsely registering for benefits after the June 2016 flood there. Her home wasn't damaged and she was living in it but claimed it was damaged and she was staying in a rental unit.
FEMA head Brock Long, investigated over vehicle use, resigns
WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency resigned Wednesday after a two-year tenure in which he managed the response to historic wildfires and major hurricanes but was...
Former FEMA boss says border situation is not an emergency
WASHINGTON (AP) — The former head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency said Thursday that what's happening on the U.S. southern border is no emergency.
Craig Fugate, who ran the national disaster agency for nearly eight years under President Barack Obama and was head of Florida's disaster agency under a Republican governor, said the push of refugees seeking asylum on the border with Mexico is not a national emergency.
Trump, California spar over money for wildfire relief funds
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — President Donald Trump threatened Wednesday to withhold money to help California cope with wildfires, a day after new Gov. Gavin Newsom asked him to double the federal investment in forest management.
Trump again suggested poor forest management is to blame for California's deadly wildfires and said he's ordered the Federal Emergency Management Agency to stop giving the state money "unless they get their act together."
FEMA will issue flood insurance policies despite shutdown
President Donald Trump's administration on Friday reversed new guidance issued by the Department of Homeland Security that prevented the Federal Emergency Management Agency from writing or renewing National Flood Insurance Program policies during the current government shutdown.
The Latest: FEMA reverses course on flood insurance decision
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The Latest on the National Flood Insurance Program (all times local):
The Federal Emergency Management Agency has reversed course and will go back to issuing and renewing National Flood Insurance Program policies, despite the ongoing government shutdown.
Missourians want action over too-high Illinois levee
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Missouri landowners and environmentalists are urging a federal agency to sanction a levee district on the Illinois side of the Mississippi River, arguing that the earthen barrier has been built above its authorized height, worsening flooding for its neighbors.
Edwards: Louisiana gets another temporary housing extension
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards says his request for a fourth extension of the federal temporary housing program for those affected by the August 2016 floods has been approved.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency extended the program through April 30, 2019.
Edwards asked that homeowners be given additional time and the low rent for the Manufactured Housing Units be retained as survivors rebuild their homes that were either severely damaged or destroyed by the floods.
Vermont gets federal approval to avoid future flood damage
MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — The Federal Emergency Management Agency has given final approval to a Vermont plan to continue buying out homes and other properties that are prone to flood damage so structures can be destroyed and the land opened up to allow future floodwaters to rise without causing damage.
The state's 2018 hazard mitigation plan builds on a series of 135 property buyouts that followed Tropical Storm Irene in 2011, when floodwaters in some cases washed homes away completely.
- Star-HeraldRicketts urging Trump administration to expedite a disaster declaration for NebraskaMarch 20, 2019
- WRAL-TVGoldsboro woman flooded out by Matthew, Florence still searching for help to return homeMarch 14, 2019
- The Washington TimesDonald Trump directs FEMA to give Alabama 'A plus treatment' in wake of deadly tornadoesMarch 4, 2019
Deadline for Florence aid request in North Carolina extended
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Home and business owners suffering damages from Hurricane Florence are getting a little more time to request federal government aid.
Gov. Roy Cooper announced Thursday's previous deadline to apply for Federal Emergency Management Agency grants or for low-interest small business loans has been extended to Dec. 19. Cooper says he requested the extension, which a FEMA spokeswoman also confirmed.
California Editorial Rdp
The Press Democrat on Congress and the president needing to fix FEMA:
The Federal Emergency Management Agency continues to mismanage disaster contracting, according to federal auditors. To paraphrase the Roman poet Juvenal, Quis procurabit ipsos procuratores? (Who will manage the managers?) If FEMA won't reform willingly, Congress and the president must make it.
FEMA denies individual disaster aid to Iowa storm victims
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Federal Emergency Management Agency has again denied Gov. Kim Reynolds' request for disaster assistance to flood victims in four Iowa counties.
Audit: $5 million IOU as West Virginia missed FEMA deadlines
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A state audit says West Virginia's Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management didn't comply with federal regulations, forcing localities to pay for disaster relief.
Fire victims still awaiting inspection won’t lose FEMA aid
CHICO, Calif. (AP) — Federal officials say survivors of a deadly Northern California wildfire will not lose disaster assistance if they are unable to get their homes inspected in the next month.
Kevin Hannes, of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said Saturday that he wanted to dispel a rumor that Butte County residents would lose benefits if their homes don't receive a FEMA inspection within 30 days.
FEMA again rejects individual aid for July Iowa tornadoes
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Gov. Kim Reynolds says the Federal Emergency Management Agency has again rejected a disaster assistance request for victims of tornadoes that hit Marshall and Polk counties last summer.
Reynolds' office announced Tuesday that FEMA had denied her appeal of the agency's earlier rejection of individual disaster assistance stemming from the July 19 tornadoes. The assistance would have helped homeowners, renters and businesses in the two counties.
Hawaii’s false missile alert leads to new recommendations
HONOLULU (AP) — The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's inspector general has recommended changes to the nation's emergency alert system after Hawaii officials in January mistakenly warned the public about an incoming ballistic missile.
The report issued last week calls for mandating that software vendors include message preview and cancelling features in their alert software. It recommends requiring that software vendors provide training to officials using their products.
Flood insurance rebuilds homes with public money repeatedly
WASHINGTON, N.C. (AP) — Floodwaters rose about 15 inches (40 centimeters) into Danielle Rees' home in September when Hurricane Florence drenched this tidewater city on the Pamlico River and overwhelmed a local creek and marshland. The first floor was a sopping mess of gritty, swampy water in three bedrooms, a bathroom and a laundry.
"It's part of living close to the river, and Washington is really low land," said Rees, a graphic designer who grew up in the city.
2 disaster recovery centers to close Monday
ATLANTA (AP) — Two disaster recovery centers in Georgia are closing Monday, but officials say residents affected by Hurricane Michael can visit others that are still open if they need assistance.
The centers closing at 6 p.m. Monday are in Early County at the Early County Alternative School in Blakely and in Miller County at the First Baptist Church Gymnasium in Colquitt.
- BusinessWireEasterly Government Properties Announces Lease Commencement for 210,373 SF FEMA Distribution Center Re-Development in Tracy, CAOctober 4, 2018
- BusinessWirePGT Innovations Mobilizes During Hurricane Florence with Emergency SuppliesOctober 3, 2018
- BusinessWirePGT Innovations Mobilizes During Hurricane Florence with Emergency SuppliesOctober 3, 2018
FEMA penalizes West Virginia over grant requirements
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A report from the West Virginia legislative auditor's office says the Federal Emergency Management Agency has penalized the state for not complying with grant requirements.
News outlets cite the report as saying management deficiencies at the state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management prompted FEMA to place West Virginia into a "manual reimbursement" policy. FEMA will now only reimburse the division when it justifies the request.
Lawmakers call on FEMA to reimburse flood recovery projects
BOULDER, Colo. (AP) — Colorado counties could lose $70 million in reimbursements on 2013 flood recovery projects because of a recent interpretation of Federal Emergency Management Agency rules.
US sends aid to Pacific islands devastated by huge typhoon
The federal government sent supplies to a U.S. territory in the Pacific that was ravaged by a super typhoon as residents of the Northern Mariana Islands dug through crumbled houses, smashed cars and fallen utility poles two days after the deadly storm.
The Latest: Military plane bringing food, water to Marianas
HONOLULU (AP) — The Latest on the aftermath of Super Typhoon Yutu in the Northern Mariana Islands (all times local):
U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency spokesman David Gervino says a military plane is bringing food, water, tarps and other supplies to help the Northern Mariana Islands cope with the aftermath of a massive typhoon.
Gervino says FEMA already had significant water and food supplies in place before the Super Typhoon Yutu hit.
600 Florence-displaced families listed for temporary housing
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Nine North Carolina families left homeless by Hurricane Florence have received temporary housing from the federal government while 600 families remain on a waiting list for the travel trailers and mobile homes, officials said Friday.
Houston seeks $2B more for Hurricane Harvey housing recovery
HOUSTON (AP) — Houston officials are preparing to request an additional $2 billion from Congress to provide more assistance to residents whose homes were damaged by Hurricane Harvey.
Trump marvels at hurricane damage, hears stories of struggle
LYNN HAVEN, Fla. (AP) — Michael Rollins shook President Donald Trump's hand Monday at the front door of his hurricane-ravaged home in the Florida Panhandle, saying he decided to ride out the storm because he didn't have anywhere else to go.
"I knew I had made my commitment to stay with my animals," Rollins told the president, standing by a massive pine tree down on the front lawn.
Disaster declaration means federal help on Florence spending
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia officials say President Donald Trump has approved the state's request for a federal disaster declaration that will help pay for costs incurred during Hurricane Florence.
Gov. Ralph Northam's office announced the decision in a press release Monday. The approval means Federal Emergency Management Agency funds will provide reimbursement for 75 percent of local and state costs incurred.
The Latest: FEMA Chief: Florida damage among worst he’s seen
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — The Latest on communities struggling in the aftermath of Hurricane Michael (all times local):
Federal Emergency Management Agency chief Brock Long is calling the damage left by Hurricane Michael some of the worst he's ever seen.
Long toured several towns in Florida's Panhandle on Sunday with Gov. Rick Scott. Long said afterward the storm damage will require officials to help meet housing needs of displaced residents for the next several months.
FEMA: Warns still not safe to return home
FE MA issues final denial of Joplin district’s appeals
JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) — Federal officials have issued final denials of appeals by the Joplin School District for $67 million in reimbursements from the 2011 tornado that devastated the city.
Ron Lankford, the school's district interim chief financial officer, says district preparations will mean the financial impact from the denial is significantly less than $67 million.
New law requires audit of failed FEMA hurricane contracts
WASHINGTON (AP) — A new law requires the Federal Emergency Management Agency to investigate how it came to award Hurricane Maria relief contracts to a company with an unproven record.
The Associated Press reported last year that the newly-formed contractor, Florida-based Bronze Star, LLC, won more than $30 million in FEMA contracts but never delivered the emergency tarps and plastic sheeting for repairs of damaged homes in Puerto Rico.
Coastal county’s new flood map might already be outdated
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina county is getting new flood maps for the first time in 14 years, but it's possible they're already out of date.
National alert rings loud across US cell phones
Emergency alert test sounds off on mobile phones nationwide
WASHINGTON (AP) — Electronic devices across the United States sounded off Wednesday as the Federal Emergency Management Agency conducted its first-ever national wireless emergency alert test.
The tone went off at 2:18 p.m. EDT. The subject of the alert read: "Presidential Alert" and text said: "THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed."
The Latest: Wireless alert sounds across the US at 2:18 EDT
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the first nationwide emergency alert test on cellphones, to take place on Wednesday (all times local):
Electronic devices sounded off across the United States Wednesday afternoon as the Federal Emergency Management agency conducted an emergency alert test.
The tone sounded at 2:18 p.m. EDT. The subject read: "Presidential Alert" and text read: "THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed."
Missed deadlines cost millions in potential disaster aid
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — As the floodwaters recede and the recovery begins, communities swamped by Hurricane Florence soon will be facing deadlines to document the billions of dollars in damage it caused if they want to be reimbursed by the federal government.
A missed deadline could be costly, even if it's not directly the fault of the affected community, according to an Associated Press analysis of recent appeals decided by top officials at the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
FEMA to test nationwide ‘Presidential Alert’
FEMA faulted for oversight of debris removal after Irma
MIAMI (AP) — The Federal Emergency Management Agency is being faulted for inadequate oversight of debris removal operations after Hurricane Irma.
The Department of Homeland Security's Office of Inspector General released a management alert Tuesday saying auditors observed "virtually no debris oversight in Florida," limited monitoring in Georgia and overstated debris loads in both states.
Emergency alert test going out to mobile phones nationwide
WASHINGTON (AP) — About 225 million electronic devices across the United States will wail and buzz Wednesday afternoon as the Federal Emergency Management Agency conducts an emergency alert test.
A tone will sound at 2:18 p.m. EDT, similar to that of an Amber Alert or flood watch warning, and the subject of the alert will read: "Presidential Alert" and text will say: "THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed."
FEMA officials assess Wisconsin flood damage
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Federal Emergency Management Agency officials are touring Wisconsin to assess damage in communities that were hit by flooding and tornadoes in August.
Five FEMA teams are assessing damage to public infrastructure and homes in order to determine whether Wisconsin qualifies for federal disaster aid, Wisconsin Public Radio reported.
Fate of FEMA leader in doubt as Florence cleanup continues
WASHINGTON (AP) — While Hurricane Florence barreled through the Carolinas, a different type of storm was brewing within the federal disaster relief agency tasked with responding to the fallout.
The fate of Brock Long, the head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, was cast in doubt with revelations that he was being investigated by Homeland Security's internal watchdog and a congressional committee for the possible misuse of government vehicles.