FDIC's Powell to head hurricane recovery

Nov. 2, 2005 at 9:13 AM

WASHINGTON, Nov. 2 (UPI) -- Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Donald Powell has been named federal coordinator of long-term Gulf Coast hurricane recovery efforts, a report said.

The 64-year-old Texan and major backer of President Bush will succeed U.S. Coast Guard Vice Adm. Thad Allen. Allen will transition out of his short-term role by the end of the year under the plan announced in a release Tuesday from Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff.

Allen has led frontline Gulf Coast recovery since replacing former Federal Emergency Management Agency Director Michael Brown -- the lightning rod for criticism of the government's disaster response, The Washington Post said.

As federal hurricane recovery coordinator, Powell will oversee "mid and long-term recovery and rebuilding plans" and report to Chertoff.

While Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Thad Cochran, R-Miss., praised the appointment, Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., said Powell has no disaster recovery experience, the Post reported.

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