FEMA will revisit no-bid contracts

Oct. 6, 2005 at 9:09 PM
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WASHINGTON, Oct. 6 (UPI) -- Hundreds of millions of dollars in federal contracts for Hurricane Katrina relief will be re-bid, FEMA director David Paulison told Congress Thursday.

The contracts were awarded with little or no competition. Paulison -- who replaced Michael Brown as head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency following the hurricane -- told a Senate committee investigating FEMA's response to the storm that the agency will revisit those contracts, the Washington Post reported.

"Sometimes you have to do (no-bid contracts) because of the expedience of getting things done," Paulison said. "And I can assure you that we are going to look at all of those contracts very carefully. All of those no-bid contracts, we are going to go back and re-bid."

FEMA awarded at least $1.5 billion in contracts during the weeks after Katrina struck -- with little or no competition among potential bidders.

Sen. Joe Lieberman, D-Conn. -- the top Democrat on the Senate Homeland Security Committee -- suggested FEMA might consider contracting for services such as housing and supplies before disaster strikes.

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