LAS VEGAS, Nev. -- Now that disaster relief funds are being distributed to flood victims in Clark County, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Nevada Division of Emergency Management are working together to ensure that disaster assistance goes only to those who are legally entitled to receive it.
"In every disaster, there are always a few unscrupulous individuals who want to profit from the recovery effort," said State Coordinating Officer Kamala Carmazzi. "We are determined to see that those people are not allowed to receive disaster loans and grants fraudulently."
FEMA's Office of Inspector General (OIG) investigates cases of fraud, waste, and abuse of federal disaster funds. That includes people who file false damage claims, try to collect for damage that is not storm-related, or misrepresent themselves as federal employees. OIG also investigates the misuse of disaster assistance funds for other purposes.
"The vast majority of applications we receive are from people who really need our help," said Federal Coordinating Officer Michael W. Lowder. "We owe it to those people to stop fraud, waste, and abuse in the government's disaster relief program."
Anyone with knowledge of disaster fund fraud may call FEMA's Office of Inspector General, toll-free, at 1-800-323-8603. Or they may write to FEMA OIG, Room 505, 500 C Street SW, Washington, DC, 20472. All such information is confidential. Those who call or write will not have to reveal their names.