+Jenkins, William O., Director, Homeland Security and Justice Issues, United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), Homeland Security: Observations on DHS and FEMA Efforts to Prepare for and Respond to Major and Catastrophic Disasters and Address Related Recommendations and Legislation (Testimony Before the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, House of Representatives, GAO-07-1142T) (July 31, 2007) (PDF — 380K)
"The Comptroller General has suggested one area for fundamental reform and oversight is ensuring a strategic and integrated approach to prepare for, respond to, recover, and rebuild after catastrophic events. FEMA enters the peak of the 2007 hurricane season as an organization in transition working simultaneously to implement the reorganization required by the Post-Katrina Reform Act and moving forward on initiatives to address the deficiencies identified by the post-Katrina reviews. This is an enormous challenge. In the short-term, Congress may wish to consider several specific areas for immediate oversight. These include (1) evaluating the development and implementation of the National Preparedness System, including preparedness for natural disasters, terrorist incidents, and an influenza pandemic; (2) assessing state and local capabilities and the use of federal grants to enhance those capabilities; (3) examining regional and multi-state planning and preparation; (4) determining the status and use of preparedness exercises; and (5) examining DHS polices regarding oversight assistance."—What GAO Found.
+United States Conference of Mayors, Homeland Security Monitoring Center, Five Years Post 9/11, One Year Post Katrina: The State of America's Readiness, a 183-City Survey (2006 Survey on Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness) (July 26, 2006) (PDF — 218K)
"Mayors acknowledge that more must be done at every level of government to make sure that cities, and the nation, are able to respond to the growing challenges of homeland security and emergency response. 'This new survey shows that we must further strengthen our partnership with the federal government to make sure that our
domestic "first preventers" and "first responders" have the resources and training they need to succeed, and that
all necessary federal support is ready in the event of a major disaster,' [Conference of Mayors President, Dearborn Mayor Michael] Guido said."—Press Release