The FEMA Bureaucracy Descends, And Obfuscates

At least two PODS – Greenspoint and the Fountain of Praise church at 13950 Hillcroft – ran out of MRE’s by midday Tuesday, with officials at the Reliant Center staging center offering scant explanation.

Reliant is the check-in and dispatch center for trucks carrying ice, water and MREs to 18 PODS, and officials there told the Houston Press Tuesday that more MREs were already on their way.

Press reporters were referred to Jan Amen of the Texas Forest Service for questions about how local, state and federal agencies were managing the dispatch of supplies. However, Amen said she did not know which agency was handling which responsibility.

Tracking down a FEMA spokesperson for an on-the-record discussion was impossible – and a FEMA source was unable to explain why PODs at Greenspoint and Hillcroft had a seeming excess of ice and water, but food was already out. (Amen said each truck carries 40,000 lbs. of ice, 16,924 liters of water, and 13,000 meals.)

The providers are contracted through FEMA.

The FEMA source also said “logistics” workers in Austin and Washington, D.C., as well as the regional office in Denton, were coordinating delivery efforts. FEMA spokesperson Marty Bahamonde was unavailable for comment.

-- Craig Malisow

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