Legislation cannot make the FEMA director
a cabinet-level official, the report noted.
On the federal level, FEMA director
Brown and DHS Secretary Chertoff began a series of miscommunications that culminated with Brown ignoring Chertoff and communicating directly with the White House instead.
The national security section of the book has a chapter on FEMA, written by James Lee Witt, President Clinton's FEMA director
and widely believed to be the future president's selection for directing FEMA for at least a year through any proposed changes.
As FEMA director
, James Lee Witt relied on careerists for operational knowledge, and he used his political skill to forge relationships between the agency and elected officials.
We felt it would just be easier to shift that responsibility over to a new department, which will be run by former FEMA Director
Michael Brown, for instance, became aware that hurricane victims in New Orleans had been moved to one of the city's convention centers only after a television journalist informed him of this fact.
According to a statement, New York City public advocate Betsy Gotbaum and Manhattan borough president Scott Stringer joined former FEMA director
James Lee Witt in urging the state capitol to set up a catastrophe insurance fund that would protect the state's natural catastrophe victims, provide more funding for first responders, and mitigate potential damage through better planning and improved consumer education.
THE GROUP SCRUTINIZED FOR AFFILIATION WITH FORMER FEMA DIRECTOR
MIKE BROWN STILL STRUGGLES TO MAKE MONEY
Journalist Jed Horne offers an indictment of government--from President Bush and the Department of Homeland Security to FEMA director
Michael Brown to New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin--in his analysis of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath.
Under President Bill Clinton, the post had been a cabinet-level position; under Bush the FEMA director
was a deputy secretary.
For Bush, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, and former FEMA Director
Mike Brown, the organization existed only as an occasion for plunder, payoffs, and posturing.
SPJ National President David Carlson, now past president, and SPJ National Freedom of Information Co-Chairman Charles Davis sent a letter to FEMA Director
Like in the other two bills, the FEMA director
would report directly to the president.
5316 would authorize the FEMA Director
to have continual, direct access to the President at all times; H.
Louis Giuffrida resigned in 1985 after becoming the subject of a federal investigation into alleged fraud and mismanagement.