WASHINGTON( Reuters) – The U.S. busines responsible for disaster response hired a contractor that failed to deliver millions of emergency dinners in hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico last year, U.S. Democratic lawmakers said on Tuesday.
Democrats on the House Oversight Committee cited enters that presented the Federal Emergency Management Agency( FEMA) awarded a virtually $156 million contract to a one-person companionship that extradited precisely 50,000 of the expected 30 million meals.
The lawmakers said documents proved the company, Atlanta-based Tribute Contracting, had a history of questions handling smaller authority contracts worth less than $100,000 and had been barred from government work until 2019.
Representatives for Tribute and its owner, Tiffany Brown, did not respond to requests for comment.
Puerto Rico is struggling to recover from its worst natural disaster in 90 times and the most significant government bankruptcy in U.S. record, with some $120 billion of mixed alliance and pension debt.
Hurricane Maria killed dozens and left Puerto Rico’s 3.4 million U.S. citizens without dominance when it impressed on Sept. 20, together with shortening access to clean water and other all-importants. FEMA last month said it would continue to provide ocean, dinners and other basic needs after earlier reports that it was going to halt aid.
The House committee’s notice follows an earlier disagreement implying contractor Whitefish Energy Holdings, a small Montana firm hired to restore the island’s superpower despite a lack of event. Governor Ricardo Rossello later canceled that deal.
After prevailing the October 2017 FEMA contract, Tribute gave merely 50,000 banquets to the U.S. country and was completed for induce 20 days later, said Representative Elijah Cummings, the committee’s top Democrat.
“It is ambiguous why FEMA or any agency would have proceeded with a contract worth $156 million in light of this company’s good contracting biography and these explicit alerts, ” he wrote, quoting reports obtained by body Democrats.
Cummings and fellow Democrat Stacey Plaskett announced on the panel’s Republican chairman, Trey Gowdy, to subpoena FEMA for documents on the company and its alleged failure to deliver billions of meals.
Gowdy’s spokeswoman Amanda Gonzalez “re just saying that” sending a subpoena was premature but that the panel would continue to review typhoon recovery efforts.
FEMA said it could not comment on Tribute, but that at the time the contract was terminated food distribution in Puerto Rico “was not affected.”
Agency spokeswoman Jenny Burke said banquets continue to be provided on small island developing and that “there are sufficient commodities both in Puerto Rico and on the two sides of the strait to continue to meet determined needs for current or future disasters.”
A website for Brown testifies her other firms include beautiful, fashion, interior design and health and wellness businesses.
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