+Berkeley Electronic Press (bePress), Hurricane Katrina and Economic Loss (provided by: Berkeley Electronic Press)
Disasters & the Law
UC Berkeley School of Law
84 entriesexpand all
+Bourne, Marko, Director, Office of Policy & Program Analysis, Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Office of Inspector General (OIG), Hurricaine Katrina Multitier Contracts (June 2008) (OIG 08-81) (PDF — 603K)
"We initiated this audit in response to Congressional concerns that, in the wake of hurricanes Katrina and Rita, multitier subcontracting (1) increased costs to the government, (2) limited opportunities for small and local businesses to participate in response and recovery efforts, and (3) resulted in layers of subcontractors being paid profit and overhead while adding little or no value to the work performed under the contract. Our objectives were to determine the validity of these concerns, as well as to determine the potential effect Section 692 of the Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006 could have on future disaster contracting.
"It does not appear that multitier subcontracting, as an isolated factor, caused significant increases in costs to the government, nor did it reduce subcontracting opportunities for small and local businesses. The prime contractors subcontracted a significant amount of the value of their contracts to small and local businesses.
"Although FEMA relied on large national prime contractors, initially preventing small and local businesses from participating as prime contractors themselves, the national prime contractors generally did well hiring small and local subcontractors. However, because subcontractor invoices generally do not include specific information on lower tier subcontractors, we could not determine how many layers of subcontracting existed on contracts or whether any layers involved contractors charging profit without contributing substantially to the work being performed on the contract.
"Although Section 692 of the Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006 would limit subcontracting to 65% of total contract costs, nothing in this legislation specifically restricts the number of tiers of subcontractors. Further, by limiting subcontracting, Section 692 could restrict funding available to small and local businesses while potentially impairing FEMA's ability to respond quickly to future catastrophic disasters. The Department of Defense has promulgated less restrictive rules to control multitiering that reduce the risks inherent in Section 692. Therefore, we recommend FEMA officials work with DHS officials, the Office of Federal Procurement Policy and Congress to promulgate less restrictive rules over multitier contracting." —Executive Summary.
+Brookings Institution, Metropolitan Policy Program, New Orleans after the Storm: Lessons from the Past, a Plan for the Future (October 2005)
+Brookings Institution, Hurricane Katrina: Where Do We Go from Here? (September 8, 2005) (PDF — 196K)
+Buxbaum, Jeremy & Erin Ziegler, Giving and Taking: Regulating Land Development in Post-Katrina New Orleans (UC Berkeley School of Law, Law 224.9, Disasters & the Law, Spring 2006) (PDF — 89K)
"It is likely that in some heavily damaged parts of New Orleans redevelopment will be restricted, either temporarily, or even permanently. The possibility of such restrictions immediately gives rise to the following question: Will restrictions on development in New Orleans effect compensable regulatory takings under the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution? In this paper, we try to answer that question, or to at least provide a framework for answering it. We conclude, although cautiously, that it is more likely than not that temporary restrictions will not effect compensable takings because property owners still have economically valuable interests, while it is more likely than not that permanent restrictions will result in compensable takings because of owner expectations and a lack of reciprocity of advantage.
"We have three primary goals. First, we summarize the proposal for redevelopment which explicitly allows for the possibility of moratoria on redevelopment in certain neighborhoods. Second, we situate the current case law on this issue within the larger context of takings jurisprudence. Understanding the courts' trends on this issue, if any are discernible, will be indispensable in trying to get a sense of how courts would rule in litigation that might arise out of regulating redevelopment in New Orleans. Third, we give an analysis of how current holdings on takings issues might apply to the situation in New Orleans. Because of the complexity of takings jurisprudence, and because of the somewhat unusual nature of the situation in New Orleans, it is difficult to make a confident prediction about how such claims would come out."—Abstract.
+Cashell, Brian W. & Marc Labonte, Congressional Research Service (CRS), The Macroeconomic Effects of Hurricane Katrina (September 13, 2005) (PDF — 39K)
+Comptroller General of the United States, Cost, Schedule and Performance Problems of the Lake Pontchartrain and Vicinity, Louisiana, Hurricane Protection Project (Corps of Engineers [Civil Functions], Department of the Army) (August 31, 1976) (PDF — 1.73M)
+The Conference Board, 18 Months After Hurricane Katrina, Labor Demand Still Soaring in Gulf Coast Area (PDF — 44K)
+Congressional Budget Office, The Macroeconomic and Budgetary Effects of Hurricane Katrina (September 6, 2005) (PDF — 60K)
+Congressional Budget Office, The Macroeconomic and Budgetary Effects of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita: An Update (September 29, 2005) (PDF — 224K)
+Czerwinski, Stanley J., Director, Strategic Issues, United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), Gulf Coast Rebuilding: Observations on Federal Financial Implications (Testimony to Congressional Committee) (GAO-07-1079T) (August 7, 2007) (PDF — 747K)
+Czerwinski, Stanley J., Director, Strategic Issues, United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), Gulf Coast Rebuilding: Preliminary Observations on Progress to Date and Challenges for the Future (Testimony Before the Subcommittee on Disaster Recovery, Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, U.S. Senate, GAO-07-574T) (April 12, 2007) (PDF — 672K)
+Daniels, Ronald J., Donald F. Kettl, & Howard Kunreuther (Editors), On Risk and Disaster: Lessons from Hurricane Katrina
"Hurricane Katrina not only devastated a large area of the nation's Gulf coast, it also raised fundamental questions about ways the nation can, and should, deal with the inevitable problems of economic risk and social responsibility. This volume gathers leading experts to examine lessons that Hurricane Katrina teaches us about better assessing, perceiving, and managing risks from future disasters.
"In the years ahead we will inevitably face more problems like those caused by Katrina, from fire, earthquake, or even a flu pandemic. America remains in the cross hairs of terrorists, while policy makers continue to grapple with important environmental and health risks. Each of these scenarios might, in itself, be relatively unlikely to occur. But it is statistically certain that we will confront such catastrophes, or perhaps one we have never imagined, and the nation and its citizenry must be prepared to act. That is the fundamental lesson of Katrina.
"The 20 contributors to this volume address questions of public and private roles in assessing, managing, and dealing with risk in American society and suggest strategies for moving ahead in rebuilding the Gulf coast."—Publisher's Description.
+Darling, Erin, Liz Skillen & Minming Wu, Just Compensation Valuation Schemes After a Flood Disaster in France, California, and Louisiana (UC Berkeley School of Law, Law 224.9, Disasters & the Law, Spring 2006) (PDF — 461K)
"Just compensation is critical to post disaster recovery in the wake of a devastating flood, especially when prior shortcomings of the government might be partially to blame. Assessing the full extent of compensation given to private landowners may help for future disaster flood recovery and planning. Despite profound geographic, demographic, and legal differences between France, Louisiana, and California a comparison of their post-disaster compensation models proves useful to identify past, present, and future models of a similar problem of postflood redevelopment compensation outside of private insurance schemes.
"Inquiring into eminent domain concepts surrounding just compensation principles in France, Louisiana, and California provides a framework for addressing post-disaster homeowner compensation. France supplies a model that demonstrates strong flood disaster prevention and land use planning measures alongside a full recovery compensation scheme. In contrast, Louisiana and California do not have explicit disaster compensation frameworks. Existing Louisiana law offers an existing legal and moral framework that can be applied by the state entity currently deliberating on post-disaster compensation program. California, on the other hand, currently offers the most unforgiving compensation scheme, but also has the time to adopt tailored flood compensation and planning principles."—Abstract.
+Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Public Health Response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita - Louisiana, 2005 (PDF — 535K)
+Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Public Health Response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita - United States, 2005 (PDF — 501K)
+Dickinson, James, Gulf Coast Blues: FEMA's Botched Plans for Emergency Housing After Katrina
+Dimond, Alan T., Hurricane Andrew: From Devastation and Chaos to Rebirth and Renewal (provided by: HeinOnline) Nova Law Review, v.17, no.3 (Spring 1993) pp.1003-07
+Federal Communications Commission (FCC), FCC Takes Steps to Assist in Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief (September 15, 2005) (PDF — 125K)
+Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Katrina/Rita: The 5th Commemoration, August 29, 2010; September 24, 2010
"Throughout this post-Katrina period, FEMA has remained dedicated to helping Louisiana families and communities recover. To date, in partnership with and in support of the state of Louisiana, we have provided more than $15.2 billion in assistance. We maintain our steadfast commitment to the resilient survivors of Louisiana as they continue along the path to full recovery.
"So, on the 5th anniversary of this unprecedented event, we can say that a lot has been accomplished, but we an also say that a lot remains to be done. FEMA is committed to being here for as long as it takes to fully recover, and we’re working to do so in a way that builds, sustains and improves south Louisiana’s capability to protect against future hazards."—Mike Karl, EMA Louisiana Recovery Office Interim Director, "Unprecedented Disaster, Unprecedented Recovery."
+Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Myths & Facts About FEMA Housing Following Katrina (FNF-08-046) (May 26, 2008)
+Fellowes, Matt & Amy Liu, Brookings Institution, Metropolitan Policy Program, Federal Allocations in Response to Katrina, Rita, and Wilma (March 21, 2006)
+Fleming, Joseph Z., Introductory Remarks: Coping with Chaos (Disaster Planning: Symposium) (provided by: HeinOnline) Urban Lawyer, v.27 (Winter 1995) pp.3-53
+Fletcher, Laurel, Phuong Pham, Eric Stover & Patrick Vinck, Rebuilding After Katrina: A Population-Based Study of Labor and Human Rights in New Orleans (June 2006) (PDF — 2.1M)
- "To collect demographic information about laborers employed in the construction and related industries in New Orleans and its environs;
- "To assess the needs and experiences of workers in the construction industry including job security, safety, fair pay, discrimination, and access to adequate housing and health care; and
- "To study the overall impact of the changing workforce demographics in the Gulf Coast region."
+Frey, William H., Audrey Singer & David Park, The Brookings Institution, Metropolitan Policy Program, Resettling New Orleans: The First Full Picture from the Census (September 12, 2007) (PDF — 6.3M)
+Goldman, Lynn & Christine Coussens, Rapporteurs, Roundtable on Environmental Health Sciences, Research, and Medicine, Environmental Public Health Impacts of Disasters: Hurricane Katrina, Workshop Summary (provided by: National Academies Press) (2007)
+Green, Stuart P., Looting, Law, and Lawlessness (provided by: SSRN) (Tulane Law Review, Vol. 81, Hurricane Katrina Symposium Issue, 2007) (PDF — 381K)
"As recent incidents in the wake of Hurricane Katrina and other disasters have illustrated, the moral content of looting spans a wide continuum: At one end are predatory and exploitative acts that seem deserving of even greater punishment than ordinary acts of burglary and larceny. At the other end are cases of necessity, involving otherwise law-abiding citizens who, as a result of forces beyond their control, find themselves hungry and exposed to the elements. In between these two poles lies a wide range of conduct that often involves impoverished and alienated citizens living on the edges of society, encouraged to engage in lawlessness by powerful group dynamics and the apparent suspension of civil order.
"This article begins by examining the various meanings - both literal and metaphorical - of looting. It then considers the factors that make bad looting so bad, and good looting less so. With respect to the latter, it considers the possibility that: (1) the disruption in normal social order might leave defendants in a state of nature, outside the jurisdictional reach of the court; (2) the defendant's criminal acts were necessary to avoid some greater harm from occurring; and (3) the otherwise law-abiding offender, suffering from a combination of fright, fatigue, hunger, exposure, and disorientation, should be at least partially excused on the grounds that his acts were out of character.
"The article concludes by considering some of the practical implications of the foregoing analysis, including the suggestion by various commentators that the proper response to looters is to shoot them on sight. It argues that such a policy would be profoundly misguided, both because the criminal law should not tolerate the disproportionate use of deadly force in response to what is essentially a property crime, and because of the obvious difficulties of distinguishing between bad and good looting, particularly under the kinds of emergency conditions in which such acts are committed."—Abstract.
+Habitat International Coalition - Housing and Land Rights Network (HIC-HLRN) & PDHRE - People's Movement for Human Rights Learning, International Human Rights Standards on Post-disaster Resettlement and Rehabilitation (PDF — 877K)
"The intention of this compilation is to draw attention to some of the numerous existing international human rights instruments, including guidelines adopted by UN agencies that should form the basis for ongoing post-tsunami rehabilitation work. The standards provided for in these instruments could be used to ensure that a human-rights-based approach is upheld and not compromised in the multiple agendas of competing relief agencies. These standards must also be used to spread learning and education amongst all actors involved in the post-tsunami efforts such that everyone works for the same purpose: the speedy attainment of human rights for all who are affected."—Foreword, Miloon Kothari.
+Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, Giving Voice to the People of New Orleans: The Kaiser Post-Katrina Baseline Survey (May 2007)
+Inniss, Lolita Buckner, A Domestic Right of Return? Race, Rights, and Residency in New Orleans in the Aftermath of Hurricane Katrina (provided by: SSRN) (Cleveland-Marshall Legal Studies Paper No. 07-143) (Boston College Third World Law Journal, Vol. 27, p. 1, 2007)
+Issues in Legal Scholarship, Berkeley Electronic Press (bePress), Catastrophic Risks: Prevention, Compensation, and Recovery
+Jadacki, Matt, Deputy Inspector General, Office of Disaster Assistance Oversight, United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Office of Inspector General, Congressional Inquiry Regarding Southwest Charter Lines, Inc. (OIG-07-47) (May 2007) (PDF — 180K)
+Jha, Abhas K. et al., Safer Homes, Stronger Communities: A Handbook for Reconstructing after Natural Disasters (provided by: World Bank) (World Bank 2010)
"As a policy maker, you may be responsible for establishing the policy framework for the entire reconstruction process or for setting reconstruction policy in only one sector. The handbook is emphatic about the importance of establishing a policy to guide reconstruction. Effective reconstruction is set in motion only after the policy maker has evaluated his or her alternatives, conferred with stakeholders, and established the framework and the rules for reconstruction.
"As international experience—and the examples in the handbook—clearly demonstrate, reconstruction policy improves both the efficiency and the effectiveness of the reconstruction process. In addition to providing advice on the content of such a policy, the handbook describes mechanisms for managing communications with stakeholders about the policy, for improving the consistency of the policy, and for monitoring the policy’s implementation and outcomes. The handbook does not tell you exactly what to do, but it should greatly improve the likelihood that the reconstruction policy that is established leads to good outcomes."—A Note to the Policy Maker: Background.
Access to this publication requires a license with World Bank's e-Library. The file is a 26.4MB PDF.
+Kates, R.W., C. E. Colten, S. Laska, & S. P. Leatherman, Reconstruction of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina:A research perspective (provided by: National Academies Press) Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS)
+Kimball, Miles, et al., National Bureau of Economic Research, Unhappiness After Hurricane Katrina (NBER Working Paper Series No. 12062) (February 2006)
+Lawrence, Steven, Director of Research, Foundation Center, Snapshot of Philanthropy's Response to the Gulf Coast Hurricanes (PDF — 379K)
+LeRoy, Michael H., Compulsory Labor in a National Emergency: Public Service or Involuntary Servitude? The Case of Crippled Ports (provided by: SSRN) (Berkley Journal of Employment and Labor Law, Vol. 28, No. 2, 2007)
"The 13th Amendment ban on involuntary servitude has new relevance as the U.S. grapples with national emergencies such as catastrophic hurricanes, flu pandemics, and terrorism. This Article considers work refusal and coerced work performance in life-threatening employment contexts. Overwhelmed by fear, hundreds of police officers and health care workers abandoned their jobs during Hurricane Katrina. Postal clerks worked against their will without masks in facilities with anthrax. A report by Congress worries that avian flu will cause sick and frightened medical personnel to stay away from work, thus jeopardizing a coherent response to a crisis.
"How far can the U.S. go in forcing reluctant civilians to perform essential jobs during a national emergency? I explore solutions to this question by hypothesizing a large release of radiation - whether by terror attack, or catastrophic accident, or major earthquake - in a vital Pacific port. These ports have a history of work stoppages that disrupt the nation's economy. I examine federal government responses if dock workers refused assignments until conditions were safe: (1) The President could declare a national emergency labor dispute under the Taft-Hartley Act, and seek an 80-day back-to-work injunction. (2) Congress could re-enact Section 8 of the War Labor Disputes Act, making it unlawful for dock workers to discontinue production for 30 days and subjecting violators to coercive damages. (3) The president could issue strong executive orders, backed by imprisonment, that regulate employment in ports.
"At the heart of my analysis, I ask: Would any of these responses violate the Thirteenth Amendment ban on involuntary servitude? Congress and the judiciary have broadened this law, and its enforcement counterpart in 18 U.S.C. ? 1584, beyond the abolition of African slave-holding. The Supreme Court in Kozminski defined involuntary servitude as forcing a person to work by physical or legal coercion.
"But the Supreme Court created 13th Amendment exceptions for transportation work. Robertson upholds a law that bars merchant seamen from quitting work, and imprisons deserters. Butler permits states to conscript citizens to work on highways, on pain of imprisonment. Dock work is similar because ports integrate ships and trucks in a transportation hub. Courts now apply these precedents to new compulsory activities, such as mandatory public service for graduation. Moreover, Kozminski reaffirmed Robertson and Butler as precedents.
"Thus, the Constitution would be unlikely to shield dock workers from involuntary labor. This has troubling implications for employees who have recently worked in national emergencies, and may do so again. Employees who work to alleviate avian flu or other catastrophic health threats are also at risk for compulsory labor that exposes them to extraordinary hazards.
"I conclude with a legislative proposal to strengthen individual rights. As my research shows, courts that are presented with national emergency disputes rarely side with the individual who stands in the way of the public's welfare. Without a more balanced labor policy to address emerging crises, the nation may realize belatedly that when we allow fundamental freedoms to be sacrificed in the name of real or perceived emergency, we invariably come to regret it." —Abstract.
+LeRoy, Michael H., From Docks to Doctor Offices After 9/11: Refusing to Work Under "Abnormally Dangerous Conditions" (provided by: SSRN) (American Law Review, Vol. 56, No. 3, 2004)
"Section 502 of the Labor-Management Relations Act (LMRA) allows employees to stop working if they face 'abnormally dangerous conditions,' and a rule under the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act creates an employee right to refuse work because of 'apprehension of death or injury.' Using a hypothetical scenario, I show that neither law would assist emergency workers who lack protective gear while responding to a terror attack.
"I propose an NLRB rule to strengthen Section 502, a 1947 law that is dormant but appropriate for these abnormal workplace dangers. Although part of my proposal draws on the experiences of 9/11, it is mainly founded on fundamental changes in job duties and government employment regulations that recognize a permanent threat to domestic security. The growing list of affected occupations includes dockworkers and doctors, subway and airport workers, power plant and postal employees, and more. However, my proposal excludes police, firefighters, and most paramedics. They perform immediate lifesaving services, and in any event, are excluded from the NLRB's jurisdiction because they are public employees.
"My proposal draws from the fruitless experience of appellate court decisions on Section 502. This caselaw is conflicted because courts disagree as to whether an employee must present proof in fact of an extreme risk, or be motivated by good faith belief. My proposal is also based on the intent of the drafters of Section 502. The two sponsors of this law were Republican senators who strongly opposed union interests. However, when proposing this law in the midst of enacting strike controls, they said 'it would be very unfair and very unjust to employees in any industry to penalize them, if, because of abnormal or unusually dangerous conditions, they should refrain from working.'
"Using evidence from recent GAO reports and other studies, I show that new types of emergency workers are poorly trained and equipped. For the few who train for a cataclysmic attack, their simulations are unrealistic. These employees— who, in their routine jobs do little or no life-threatening work— are not trained for their own fear and panic. Thus, there is too little attention to the possibility that these essential workers will refuse orders when their lives are endangered.
"By breathing life into Section 502, the NLRB would join the large circle of federal and state agencies that are currently immersed in this emergency planning. The purpose of my Article is not to spare a few careers that might otherwise be lost in a poor response to an attack. If these newly designated or de facto emergency workers are not extended a work refusal right, their employers will continue to be lax in improving protective equipment, communication systems, bio-terror inoculations, and work procedures. In the final analysis, proper training and protection of these new emergency workers is essential to deter, prevent, respond to, and mitigate an attack." —Abstract.
+Levinson, Daniel R., United States Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Inspector General, Emergency Response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita: Audit of Program Support Center's Award Process for a Contract With Avaya, Inc. (A-03-06-005 10) (March 27, 2007) (PDF — 88K)
+Liu, Amy & Allison Plyer, The Brookings Institution Metropolitan Policy Program, Greater New Orleans Community Data Center, A Review of Key Indicators of Recovery Two Years After Katrina (The New Orleans Index) (August 2007) (PDF — 883K)
+Liu, Amy, The Brookings Institution Metropolitan Policy Program,, Building a Better New Orleans: A Review of and Plan for Progress One Year after Hurricane Katrina (Special Analysis in Metropolitan Policy) (August 2006) (PDF — 442K)
"This paper will review the federal, state, and local response to date as it relates to the important goal of creating a better New Orleans. This paper does not attempt to review every decision made on every aspect of the recovery, but instead tries to highlight areas of priority.
"The paper will begin with a quick overview of the federal, state, and local roles to date on post-Katrina recovery.
"It will then evaluate how well the overall recovery response has performed in meeting the three goals of a creating a more inclusive, sustainable, and prosperous New Orleans. In each of these goals, the paper reviews pre-Katrina conditions in New Orleans and puts forth a vision for the future. It then highlights those areas of meaningful progress at the federal, state, and local levels in support of those goals and closes with an action plan to further the recovery progress."—Introduction.
+Lovett, John A., Property and Radically Changed Circumstances: Hurricane Katrina and Beyond (provided by: SSRN)
Also available through Hein Online at:
"Although Hurricane Katrina altered our national dialogue about many issues, few scholars have addressed whether the storm changed thinking about fundamental property relationships. This article fills that void in two ways. First, it creates a theoretical framework for understanding property law in the context of events producing radically changed circumstances. It does this by defining these events, exploring the mismatch between property law's traditional focus on stability and environments of radical change, creating a taxonomy of property relationships tailored for this exploration, describing typical problems confronted after an event of radical change, and finally developing a set of normative criteria to evaluate the resiliency of property regimes.
"The second part of the article focuses on two common property relationships - between landlord and tenant and mortgagor and mortgagee - and examines how their default rules, voluntary private ordering, and market practices have fared under the pressure of Hurricane Katrina. This part also analyzes how another kind of property relationship - between a city (New Orleans) and its citizens - has weathered the radical change created by Katrina and how a series of federally funded and state administered programs have fared in restoring housing - a crucial common resource and public good - in the post-Katrina environment.
"The article concludes by suggesting that longer term, more indefinite property relationships characterized by private ordering, risk spreading, setting aside exogenous resources and mutual accommodation - commercial lease and mortgage relationships to be specific - show more resiliency than shorter term and more finite relationships where default rules make exit easy for some parties (residential landlords) but re-entry difficult for others (residential tenants). The article also demonstrates how government housing recovery programs can be assessed using the normative criteria developed in Part I and what policy makers can learn from traditional private property regimes facing events of radical change." —Abstract.
+Luther, Linda, Congressional Research Service (CRS), NEPA and Hurricane Response, Recovery, and Rebuilding Efforts (September 28, 2005) (PDF — 59K)
+MacLean, Pamela A., A Tale of Disaster and Two Courts National Law Journal (November 8, 2005)
+Madamala, Kusuma et al., Characteristics of Physician Relocation Following Hurricane Katrina Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness, v.1, no.1, pp.21-26 (2007)
+Martel, Charles, Bring it on Home: A Gulf Coast Marshall Plan Based on International Humanitarian Standards (provided by: SSRN) (Vermont Law Review, Vol. 32, Book 1, Fall 2007)
"The article is a critique of the U.S. government's response to regional recovery following Hurricane Katrina, coupled with an argument that policies based on international standards would better serve the hurricane-stricken area. The author contends that part of the problem is that the legal framework for disaster relief, the federal Stafford Act, is insufficient for shaping recovery for catastrophic humanitarian crises that overwhelm state and local governments. Because the Act calls only for discretionary, intermittent federal efforts, and shields such efforts with broad legal immunity, it is a prescription for the sluggish and ineffective governmental action that has hamstrung the Gulf region's recovery.
"The author maintains that what is needed is a comprehensive recovery program akin to the post World War II Marshall Plan. International standards for humanitarian responses to disaster, specifically the United Nations Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, serve as a policy framework for such a program. The Principles allow for recognition that a crisis on the scale of Katrina calls for a more robust, centralized, federally-led response that addresses the scope of the problem and the interdependency of its many facets.
"The article has five parts. First is an analysis of the situation in the region, focusing on the New Orleans area. Here the author identifies three categories of problems - the problem of return and rebuilding, focusing on private property and civic infrastructure; the problem of security, focusing on flood protection, levees, and wetlands; and the problem of government, focusing on inefficiency, incompetence and inadequate resource allocation.
"The article's second part analyzes the problem in the law. The Stafford Act is reviewed and judicial criticisms discussed. Part three of the article reviews the specific provisions of the Guiding Principles that apply to the Gulf Coast. The author considers the legal status of the Principles, concluding that while certain of the principles may be evolving into customary international law, they are not legally binding but rather intended as a general policy framework.
"In the fourth part of the article, the author recommends the following sixteen point "Marshall Plan for the Gulf" based on the Principles: 1. The federal government will assume primary responsibility for an integrated recovery effort. 2. All persons displaced or injured by the disaster have recovery rights. 3. Displaced persons willing to return have a right to return and their displacement will end as soon as possible. 4. Living conditions will be established that are materially sufficient to allow persons to return and remain. 5. The government will assist persons whose homes are recoverable to repair and rebuild, and must ensure access to decent and affordable housing. 6. Comprehensive, reliable flood protection measures will be taken, including strengthened levees and coastal wetlands. 7. Ineffective bureaucracies will be replaced by streamlined, efficient, effective and easily understood administrative processes for relief and recovery. 8. The military will be deployed for debris removal and rebuilding. 9. Personal property and possessions will be protected and disaster victims will be reasonably compensated for losses. 10. Gulf Coast residents will have access to health care. 11. The government will reopen schools and take other measures to ensure education for all children in stricken communities. 12. The government will take steps to increase economic opportunities in stricken areas, such as partnerships, incentives and assistance for businesses which reopen or locate in the region. 13. The right of evacuees to participate in politics and civic life must be ensured. 14. Storm victims will be included in recovery planning. 15. Anti-discrimination measures will be enforced to ensure that the disaster and recovery do not have a discriminatory effect. 16. The special needs of at risk groups will be met.
"In the fifth part of the article, the author posits that U.S. adoption of the Principles as the basis for international disaster recovery efforts forms a moral and political basis for their domestic application in the Gulf. This is demonstrated by formal U.S. policy promoting the Principles as well as actual U.S. implementation of the Principles in Iraq and in response to the 2004 tsunamis." —Abstract.
+McCarthy, Kevin K. & Mark Hanson, RAND Corporation, Post-Katrina Recovery of the Housing Market Along the Mississippi Gulf Coast (Technical Report) (TR-511-OA/MAR/NAR) (September 27, 2007) (PDF — 1.5M)
+McCarty, Maggie, Libby Perl & Bruce Foote, Congressional Research Service (CRS), The Role of HUD Housing Programs in Response to Disasters (PDF — 86.2K)
+Morrison & Foerster LLP, Katrina Helping Handbook: A Resource for Individuals, Families, and Small Businesses
+National Wildlife Federation (NWF), Hurricane Katrina Report Card (August 2007) (PDF — 215K)
"Two years after Hurricane Katrina much has become clear. We know that the devastation in New Orleans and surrounding areas was less a natural than a man-made disaster. Katrina's surge into New Orleans was the direct result of poorly constructed levees, an ill-conceived navigation channel, and the destruction of millions of acres of coastal wetlands. Furthermore, the storm's intensity itself was fueled by unusually warm waters in the tropical Atlantic due, in part, to global warming pollution.
"How have Congress and the Administration responded to these lessons of Katrina and addressed the chief causes of its tragic aftermath? A report card is due on the federal government's response to global warming, reforming the Army Corps of Engineers and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and restoring the wetlands along the Gulf Coast that act as a natural buffer to storms."—Introduction
+Natural Hazards Review, Natural Hazards Review
+Office of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Broken Promises: The Republican Response to Katrina (August 23, 2006)
+Overby, A. Brooke, Mortgage Foreclosure in Post-Katrina New Orleans (provided by: SSRN) (Tulane Public Law Research Paper No. 07-04) (Boston College Law Review, Vol. 48, No. 4, 2007)
"Hurricane Katrina, the largest disaster in the history of the United States, caused widespread property destruction throughout the Gulf Coast, but particularly in the city of New Orleans. Although the storm created an environment which facilitated increased mortgage defaults in the area, the Article analyzes data from the Orleans Parish Recorder of Mortgages Office and from the Orleans Parish Civil District Court and concludes that foreclosure filing rates in the year after Katrina in fact decreased significantly from the rates for the corresponding period in the year prior to the storm. This result is contrary to what would normally be expected in a usual mortgage lending market, where an increase in the rate of mortgage default would lead to an increase in the rate of foreclosure.
"The Article evaluates in detail the legal and market responses to mortgage default after the storm that contributed to the reduction in foreclosure actions in Orleans Parish in the year after Katrina. Secondary mortgage market initiatives provided the principal means for mortgage relief, because Louisiana debtors received little in the way of formal legal relief. Even though secondary market responses were successful in protecting mortgage debtors after Katrina, their limitations in scope make them inadequate to address the years of financial distress that might likely follow any disaster of the magnitude of Katrina. Thus, while the Katrina experience demonstrates that secondary market interventions can effectively reduce debtor distress after a major disaster, such interventions should not been seen as a substitute for more traditional legal responses to address mortgage debtor distress after disasters or other economic crises." —Abstract.
+Peek, Lori (Editor), Children, Youth and Environments Center for Research and Design, Special Issue: Children and Disasters Children, Youth and Environments Journal, v. 18, no.1 (2008)
+Pike, Jennifer, Research Director, Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana, Spending Federal Disaster Aid: Spending Federal Disaster Aid in the Wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita (2007)
+PolicyLink, Building a Better New Orleans: Hope Needs Help (August 2007) (Issue Brief) (PDF — 1.67K)
+President's Council on Integrity and Efficiency (PCIE), Homeland Security Roundtable, Compendium of OIG Hurricane Oversight in the Gulf States (December 12, 2005) (PDF — 3.77M)
+President's Council on Integrity and Efficiency (PCIE) & Executive Council on Integrity and Efficiency (ECIE), Oversight of Gulf Coast Hurricane Recovery: A 90-Day Progress Report to Congress (December 30, 2005) (PDF — 3.84M)
+Rapp, Geoffrey Christopher, Gouging: Terrorist Attacks, Hurricanes, and the Legal and Economic Aspects of Post-Disaster Price Regulation (provided by: SSRN) (Kentucky Law Journal, Vol. 94, p. 535, 2005-2006) (PDF — 160K)
+Remnick, David, High Water: How Presidents and Citizens React to Disasters (Letter from Louisiana) New Yorker (October 3, 2005)
+Rostker, Bernard D., William M. Hix & Jeremy M. Wilson, RAND Gulf States Policy Institute, Recruitment and Retention: Lessons for the New Orleans Police Department (2007) (PDF — 332K)
+Rowley, Karen, Special Projects Manager, Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana & The Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government, GulfGov Reports: A Year and a Half After Katrina and Rita, an Uneven Recovery (April 19, 2007) (PDF — 652 KB)
+Rowley, Karen, Special Projects Manager, Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana & The Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government, GulfGov Reports: Education - An Examination of the Impact of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita on the Public School Districts in 15 Communities (April 11, 2007) (PDF — 578 KB)
+Seidenberg, Jennifer, Cultural Competency in Disaster Recovery: Lessons Learned from the Hurricane Katrina Experience for Better Serving Marginalized Communities (UC Berkeley School of Law, Law 224.9, Disasters & the Law, Spring 2006) (PDF — 103K)
"The awareness of federal, state and local governments of the potential for levees in New Orleans to fail and decimate poor neighborhoods of the city was widely reported following the hurricane Katrina disaster. Demographics in the areas likely to incur the most severe damage were known to be neighborhoods of predominately poor, black residents. In addition to understanding the likely geographical impact of the impending disaster, the federal government was aware of the extensive social science and legal challenges detailing the likelihood of minority citizens to experience the worst consequences and slowest recovery from natural disasters. Studies dating back to the 1950s and numerous reports of the Red Cross support this conclusion. FEMA itself was sued in federal court for its inadequate response to marginalized communities during hurricane Andrew in 1992. While the federal government may not be held legally responsible for its discretionary policies within the disaster relief context, the horror of hurricane Katrina surely calls for a long overdue re-thinking of the federal approach to assisting marginalized communities in disaster recovery. Social science, the practical problems raised within legal challenges, as well as successful strategies from other disasters and even within the Katrina tragedy offer numerous opportunities for such reform."—Abstract.
+Shear, William B., Director, Financial Markets and Community Investment, United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), Hurricane Katrina: Agency Contracting Data Should Be More Complete Regarding Subcontracting Opportunities for Small Businesses (Testimony Before the Committee on Small Business, House of Representatives, GAO-07-698T) (April 12, 2007) (PDF — 312K)
+Taylor, Gene, U.S. Representative (D MS-04) & U.S. Representative Charlie Melancon (D LA-03), Response, Relief, and Recovery: Katrina and Beyond, Recommendations for Legislative Action (PDF — 394K)
+The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, Five Years After Katrina, Most Say Nation is Not Better Prepared: Progress Seen in New Orleans, Gulf Rebuilding (August 26, 2010) (PDF — 112K)
+United States Army Corps of Engineers, Interagency Performance Evaluation Task Force (IPET), Performance Evaluation of the New Orleans and Southeast Louisiana Hurricane Protection System: Draft Final Report of the Interagency Performance Evaluation Task Force (Final Draft, Subject to Revision) (June 1, 2006)
- Volume I: Executive Summary and Overview ? Summary of findings and lessons learned. Overview of performance evaluation activities and reports.
- Volume II: Geodetic Vertical and Water Level Datums ? Update of geodetic and water level references for the region and determining accurate elevations for all critical structures.
- Volume III: The Hurricane Protection System ? Documentation of the character of the hurricane protection system, including the design assumptions and criteria, as built and maintained condition.
- Volume IV: The Storm ? Determining the surge and wave environments created by Katrina and the time history and nature of the forces experienced by protection structures during the storm.
- Volume V: The Performance ? Levees and Floodwalls ? Understanding the behavior of individual damaged structures and development of criteria for evaluation of undamaged sections. Providing input to repairs and ongoing design and planning efforts.
- Volume VI: The Performance ? Interior Drainage and Pumping ? Understanding the performance of the interior drainage and pumping systems with regard to extent and duration of flooding. Examination of scenarios to understand system-wide performance.
- Volume VII: The Consequences ? Determination of the economic, human safety and health, environmental, and social and cultural losses due to Katrina. Examination of scenarios to understand implications of losses and possible recovery paths on future risk.
- Volume VIII: Risk and Reliability ? Determination of the inherent risk for all parts of the system prior to and following Katrina. Provision of capability for risk-based decision support for continuing improvement and development of hurricane protection.
- Volume IX: Supporting Appendices ? Documentation of information resources and management, program management, and communications."
+United States Deparment of the Interior (DOI), Office of Inspector General, DOI's 2005 Hurricane Relief Expenditures (Report no. C-IN-MOA-0004-2006) (March 2007) (PDF — 697K)
"The devastating hurricanes of 2005 had a two-fold impact on DOI. First, DOI was called upon to assist in the federal relief efforts under the National Response Plan (NRP). Second, DOI's bureaus were greatly affected by the disasters. DOI sustained significant damage to 12 parks and preserves, 86 refuges, 68 water monitoring gauges, and the Mineral Management Service's (MMS) Gulf of Mexico Regional Office. As of September 30, 2006, DOI spent approximately $104 million on hurricane relief and recovery. This included approximately $61 million for NRP activities and $43 million to respond to and address internal damage.
"We are pleased to report that overall, the bureaus effectively managed their 2005 hurricane-related expenditures. Given the magnitude of the damage sustained to the Gulf Coast and DOI facilities, the issues we identified through our expenditure testing were relatively insignificant, and the bureaus performed well."—Earl E. Devaney, Inspector General.
+United States Department of Defense, Inspector General, Contract Administration of the Ice Delivery Contract Between International American Products, Worldwide Services and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers During the Hurricane Katrina Recovery Effort (PDF — 698K)
"The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Principal Assistant Responsible for Contracting requested a review on the administration of the ice delivery process between International American Products, Worldwide Services and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Specifically, we limited our review to only the administration of the ice delivery process during the Hurricane Katrina recovery effort. The report also addresses other matters identified during our review of the administration of the 2003 ice delivery contract. We issued DoD Inspector General Report No. 2006-116, 'Ice Delivery Contracts Between International American Products, Worldwide Services and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers,' on September 26, 2006. That report addressed Congressman Bennie Thompson's concerns on the award of the ice delivery contracts between International American Products, Worldwide Services and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. This report addresses the administration of the 2003 ice delivery contract related to the Hurricane Katrina recovery effort....
"The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Charleston District did not effectively administer the 2003 ice delivery contract for the Hurricane Katrina recovery effort. The Corps Charleston District did not provide adequate training and guidance for invoice processing over the National Ice/Water Mission. They made inaccurate or inadequately supported payments on 142 of the 342 invoices received in the amount of about $262,000."—Executive Summary.
+United States Department of Defense, Inspector General, Financial Management of Hurricane Katrina Relief Efforts at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Report No. D-2007-081) (April 6, 2007)
+United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office of Inspector General, Emergency Response to Hurricaine Katrina: Use of the Government Purchase Card (OEI-07-06-00150) (May 2007) (PDF — 709K)
"The Government purchase card program was designed to save the Government money by avoiding costly paperwork and to expedite the process of making purchases. In response to Hurricane Katrina, Public Law 109-62 authorized agencies to streamline certain purchasing requirements for procurement of supplies or services to support rescue and relief operations. This report (1) determines whether Government purchase card purchases related to Hurricane Katrina complied with requirements for the use of the card and (2) identifies lessons learned from Hurricane Katrina purchases to assist in the administration of the Government purchase card program during future emergency situations.
"We found that 15 percent of purchases did not comply with purchase card requirements. Additionally, cardholders had questions and concerns regarding some purchases and over half of cardholders expressed the need for additional written guidance regarding emergency purchasing procedures. Lastly, we found that Hurricane Katrina purchase data contained inaccuracies.
"We recommend that the Assistant Secretary for Administration and Management provide additional written guidance on emergency purchasing procedures. We also recommend that ASAM require training on emergency purchasing procedures. Finally, we recommend that ASAM develop a tracking system for monitoring Government purchase card purchases during emergency situations. In its comments to the draft report, ASAM concurred with our recommendations and stated that it has set a course of action to strengthen the Department of Health and Human Services' purchase card program."
+United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Office of Inspector General, Review of FEMA's Use of Proceeds From the Sales of Emergency Housing Units (PDF — 424K)
"Starting in fiscal year 2005, and continuing through early 2007, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) officials used funds received from the sale of used travel trailers and mobile homes to partially finance the operations of a dozen Emergency Housing Unit (EHU) sites in seven states. However, more than $13.5 million of the sales proceeds were expended for ineligible purchases. This occurred because FEMA program officials failed to ensure that the EHU expenditures met General Services Administration (GSA) regulations on the use of sales proceeds.
"Proceeds from the sale of government property are restricted-use funds that can be used for the purchase of a select group of replacement type items within a specified time. GSA regulations specify conditions that must be met in order to participate in the program, and if not met, an agency must return proceeds to the United States Treasury.FEMA officials used approximately one half of the sales proceeds, or about $13.5 million, on ineligible expenditures including (1) contracts to support and equip storage sites, (2) replenishment of purchase card accounts, and (3) travel expenses. These purchases generally represented operating expenses of the EHU sites, but were ineligible expenditures under GSA regulations. Because of the unbudgeted nature of these funds and the need for better oversight and control, unnecessary and uneconomical purchases were made.
"FEMA requested this review in early 2007 and FEMA's Disaster Finance Center initiated its own detailed review concurrently. The Disaster Finance Center review, completed in June 2007, concluded that most of the sales proceeds were used for ineligible purposes or not used within prescribed timeframes. The Disaster Finance Center recommended that appropriate fund account adjustments be made and that improperly used funds be returned to the U.S. Treasury. We concur with the Disaster Finance Center recommendations and make additional recommendations to prevent misuse in the future."—Executive Summary
+United States Department of Justice, Fact Sheet: Department of Justice Law Enforcement Efforts in New Orleans, Louisiana (August 21, 2006)
+United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Office of Inspector General, New Housing Contract for Hurricane Katrina Command Post Reduced Costs but Limited Competition (Audit Report, Report No. 2007-P-00015) (March 29, 2007) (PDF — 308K)
- Overstated the need for land
- Sought unneeded kitchen space, refrigerators, and microwaves
- Did not consider multi-story office space
- Unnecessarily required a 6-foot fence
- Did not clearly indicate whether private rooms per person were needed"
+United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), Disaster Housing: Implementation of FEMA's Alternative Housing Pilot Program Provides Lessons for Improving Future Competitions (Report for Congress) (August 31, 2007) (PDF — 1.35M)
+United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), Emergency Management Assistance Compact: Enhancing EMAC's Administrative and Collaborative Capacity Should Improve National Disaster Response (PDF — 8M)
"Since its inception in 1995, the EMAC network has grown significantly in size, volume, and the type of resources it provides. EMAC's membership has increased from a handful of states in 1995 to 52 states and territories today, and EMAC members have used the compact to obtain support for several types of disasters including hurricanes, floods, and the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. The volume and variety of resources states have requested under EMAC have also grown significantly. For example, after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, New York requested 26 support staff under EMAC to assist in emergency management operations; whereas, in response to the 2005 Gulf Coast hurricanes, approximately 66,000 personnel—about 46,500 National Guard and 19,500 civilian responders— were deployed under EMAC from a wide variety of specialties, most of whom went to areas directly impacted by the storms.
"While the EMAC network has developed a basic administrative capacity,opportunities exist for it to further build on and sustain these efforts. The EMAC network has adopted several good management practices, such as using after-action reports to learn from experiences and developing a 5-year strategic plan. However, the EMAC network can enhance its administrative capacity by improving how it plans, measures, and reports on its performance. FEMA provided $2 million to help build this capacity in 2003, but the agreement has recently expired. FEMA and EMAC leadership are in the process of finalizing a new 3-year cooperative agreement. Such an agreement would enhance the EMAC network's ability to support its collaborative efforts." —What the GAO found.
+United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), Energy Efficiency: Important Challenges Must Be Overcome to Realize Significant Opportunities for Energy Efficiency Improvements in Gulf Coast Reconstruction (Report to Congressional Addressees, GAO-07-654) (June 2007) (PDF — 540K)
+United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), Hurricane Katrina: Allocation and Use of $2 Billion for Medicaid and Other Health Care Needs (Report to Congressional Committees, GAO-07-67) (February 2007) (PDF — 1.65M)
"In February 2006, the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 (DRA) appropriated $2 billion for certain health care costs related to Hurricane Katrina through Medicaid and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) was charged with allocating the $2 billion in funding to states directly affected by the hurricane or that hosted evacuees.
"GAO performed this work under the Comptroller General's statutory authority to conduct evaluations on his own initiative. In this report, GAO examined: (1) how CMS allocated the DRA funds to states, (2) the extent to which states have used DRA funds, and (3) whether selected states—Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas—anticipate the need for additional funds after DRA funds are expended."—Why GAO Did this Study.
+United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), Hurricanes Katrina and Rita: Federally Funded Programs Have Helped to Address the Needs of Gulf Coast Small Businesses, but Agency Data on Subcontracting Are Incomplete (Report to the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, U.S. Senate, GAO-10-723) (July 2010) (PDF — 2.14M)
+United States House of Representatives, Committee on Government Reform???Minority Staff, Special Investigations Division, Dollars, Not Sense: Government Contracting Under the Bush Administration (PDF — 591K)
"Under the Bush Administration, the 'shadow government' of private companies working under federal contract has exploded in size. Between 2000 and 2005, procurement spending increased by over $175 billion dollars, making federal contracts the fastest growing component of federal discretionary spending.
"This growth in federal procurement has enriched private contractors. But it has also come at a steep cost for federal taxpayers. Overcharging has been frequent, and billions of dollars of taxpayer money have been squandered."—Executive Summary.
A section devoted to "Wasteful Katrina Contracts" begins on p.58.
+Villanova Law Review, Andrew: Force Majeure - The Legal Aftermath (provided by: HeinOnline)
+Yang, Sarah, Media Relations, UC Berkeley News, Investigators Release Preliminary Findings of Levee Failures at Senate Hearing (Press release) (November 2, 2005)
+Yukins, Christopher R., Hurricane Katrina's Tangled Impact on U.S. Procurement (provided by: SSRN) (Government Contractor, Vol. 47, No. 34, September 14, 2005) (GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 161)