FEMA has broken its promise to reopen four multimillion-dollar no-bid contracts for Hurricane Katrina work, including three that federal auditors say wasted significant amounts of money.
Officials said they awarded the four contracts last October to speed recovery efforts that might have been slowed by competitive bidding. Some critics, however, suggested they were rewards for politically connected firms.
Acting FEMA Director R. David Paulison pledged last fall to rebid the contracts, which were awarded to Shaw Group Inc., Bechtel Corp., CH2M Hill Inc. and Fluor Corp. Later, the agency acknowledged the rebidding wouldn’t happen until February. (. . .)
An additional $1.5 billion in work promised to small businesses also has yet to be awarded.
A review by the Government Accountability Office of 13 major contracts said last week the government had wasted millions of dollars, due mostly to poor planning by FEMA. Among the 13 were three of the four no-bid contracts for temporary housing, worth up to $500 million each, that went to three major firms with extensive government ties.
Yes, the GOP establishment has chosen bureaucratic inefficiency over the hard-working little guy. Just as they did in Iraq, where billions have vanished and water/electricity access are still below pre-war levels. I guess a centralized, federally-controlled market is the price you pay for fighting communism, though, right boys? (Take your time, warriors of the right-- I'll give you a few months to let that sink in.)