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Archive for Sunday, November 2, 2008

FEMA official: Agency response slow after Ike

November 2, 2008

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— A top official of the Federal Emergency Management Agency admits that the agency was sluggish in its response to Texans affected by Hurricane Ike's devastation, according to a published report.

Deputy FEMA Administrator Harvey E. Johnson Jr. said he intends to improve the help that the agency provides to Texans whose home were damaged or destroyed by the September hurricane. He said FEMA will deploy mobile homes to the hardest-hit areas more rapidly, review rules that might be causing premature denials of assistance and provide more resources to Texas.

He said Friday he has put more personnel into Texas housing assistance programs. He invited energy company officials into FEMA's Texas field offices to help provide electric power to mobile homes housing storm victims, and he has started a review of procedures that result in relatively few families being approved for assistance when they first apply.

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