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Author: Elizabeth Zimmerman
As some frequent blog readers may remember, back in January, we first explained on this blog that FEMA, along with other federal agencies government wide, is required by law to identify any potential improper payments of federal disaster aid, and to take steps to recover those funds.I also testified before the Senate on this same matter back in March.Recoupment is not a new process that only FEMA is required to engage in.  Our agency recently reinitiated the process after placing it on hold in 2007.  And like FEMA, other federal agencies are also required to recoup improper payments...
Posted On: May 13, 2011
Author: Dan Stoneking
We have written recently about our ongoing work with the private sector, and we wanted to share an additional example where you can get involved, too.  Tonight at 9 p.m. EDT, Country Music Television (CMT) will host “Music Builds: The CMT Disaster Relief Concert” to raise awareness and money for disaster survivors affected by the recent storms, tornadoes and flooding.The event will feature a special call to action by President Obama, along with performances from some of country music’s biggest stars. All money raised will go to the American Red Cross, one of the many voluntary agencies...
Posted On: May 12, 2011
Author: Dan Stoneking
As FEMA continues to support our state partners across the country as they respond to and recover from disaster, its important to remember that FEMA is just part of an emergency management team that includes the entire federal family, state, local and tribal governments, the faith-based and non-profit communities and the public.  In addition, a crucial component of our nation’s capability to respond to and recover from disasters rests in the private sector.Understanding the unique capabilities that businesses have to contribute, FEMA has expanded its capability to communicate, cultivate...
Posted On: May 11, 2011
Author: Tim Manning
If you work in the emergency management field, or are a concerned citizen, then you have probably heard about the National Level Exercise happening May 16-19. The exercise will simulate a major earthquake along the New Madrid fault, which runs through the middle of the country along much of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. And since it’s a National Level Exercise, we are bringing all the relevant team members to make the exercise as realistic as possible – federal/state/local governments, the private sector, non-profit and faith-based groups, the public, and even the international community....
Posted On: May 11, 2011
Author: Shayne Adamski
I’ve written several times about using social media in emergency situations.  This past Thursday, several of us from FEMA attended a hearing before a U.S. Senate panel on “Understanding the Power of Social Media as a Communication Tool in the Aftermath of Disasters.”  Administrator Fugate testified at the hearing to discuss how we use social media to facilitate two-way communication with the public in a disaster environment.  In case you missed it, here are some of the highlights from his testimony: He emphasized the importance of adapting to the method and tools that the...
Posted On: May 11, 2011
Author: Public Affairs
When federal disaster assistance becomes available to individuals, we use many means of communication to encourage disaster survivors to apply with FEMA. One way we get the word out is through our teams of community relations specialists. We’ve talked about community relations teams in the past, after they hit the ground in Alabama encouraging residents to apply for assistance. Recently, teams have been on the ground in Alabama, Mississippi, North Carolina and Georgia, performing door-to-door “sweeps” in affected areas. The work of community relations teams have been in the news lately, and...
Posted On: May 10, 2011
Author: Rachel Racusen
As we constantly say at FEMA, having an emergency communications plan is one of the most important things people can do to be prepared for disasters. And this morning, Administrator Fugate will join several of our partners in emergency communications at an event in New York City to announce a new tool that will enhance federal, state and local emergency communications plans with the public – the Personal Localized Alerting Network, or more appropriately, PLAN.PLAN is a technology developed by FEMA that will allow any customers of participating wireless carriers to turn their mobile phones...
Posted On: May 10, 2011
Author: Public Affairs
Editor’s Note: Updated on May 10, 5 p.m. EDT  Yesterday, President Obama made federal disaster assistance available to individuals in five counties in Missouri and Tennessee, to supplement the state and local recovery efforts in the area struck by severe storms, tornadoes, and flooding.   If you live in an eligible county and have sustained losses, you can register for assistance at www.disasterassistance.gov, on your phone at http://m.fema.gov, or by calling  800-621-FEMA (3362) / TTY 800-462-7585.If you have flood insurance, this is a good time to locate your policy and...
Posted On: May 9, 2011
Author: Public Affairs
Many of you were following our blog and the activities leading up to the Great Central U.S. Shakeout conducted on April 28. Not only was the ShakeOut the multi-state earthquake drill (with 3.1 million participants), there’s no doubt that it was also the most successful drill to take place along the New Madrid Seismic Zone.  Millions of registered participants; from Atlanta, Ga. to Chicago, Ill. took part in the “Drop! Cover! Hold On!”  drill scheduled to teach earthquake safety.Students at the Milford Elementary School in Atlanta, GA participate in the ShakeOut drill. FEMA and...
Posted On: May 9, 2011
Author: Public Affairs
We are continuing to support the emergency management team across the southeast as they recover from deadly storms and tornadoes.  Here are some of the latest photos from our Photo Library, highlighting some of the ongoing recovery efforts.Griffin, Ga., May 4, 2011 -- A Catoosa County resident confirms the necessary paper work for filing an application to receive federal funding for damage from the April 27, 2011 tornado. FEMA Disaster Assistance Employee Carol Hill, at the Catoosa County Disaster Recovery Center, explains the process.Concord, Ala., May 4, 2011 -- Federal Coordinating...
Posted On: May 9, 2011

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