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September 10, 2005

Start with FedBizOpps

As promised in the entry below, I'm pulling together some of the links necessary to monitor the use of the billions of dollars being spent to cleanup after Katrina. They can also serve individuals and companies who want to provide goods and services to the efforts.

Start with the Katrina page at FedBizOpps. Operated by the General Services Administration's Federal Supply Service, the page serves as a directory to other federal and state agencies contracting cleanup services.

The page notes that "Due to the immediacy of emergency opportunities, it is unlikely that opportunities dealing with the hurricanes will be advertised through the FedBizOpps system.

"Vendors looking to provide products or services in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi or Florida should contact the following resources ..."

Note here that we've now established one of conditions that enables abuse -- "normal" procedures are being left behind. But there's no real help for that: We'd all be further enraged if critical work went undone while weeks' or months' worth of time was wasted filling out reams of paperwork and meticulously following each and every one of God-knows-how-many regulations control the letting of government contracts.

The Department of Homeland Security has activated its National Emergency Resource Registry. It provides the opportunity to get in the pool, so to speak. From the page: "If you or your organization/agency/corporation have resources that may be made available to the response agencies, please list them in this Resource Registry."

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is steering prospective contractors to Phillips & Jordan Inc. Disaster and Recovery Group and AshBritt Environmental. Both are compliling and maintaining lists of qualified contractors and sub-contractors.

The Hill, "the newspaper for and about The U. S. Congress," has already taken an early look at some of the ties between these two companies and politicians/government figures.

So now we have the second condition necessary for abuse. The foundation work for the recovery effort has been contracted out to private firms with links to various political figures.

The various states also have various programs. Don't have time just now to scan their websites to see the who and how of their processes, but will get back to it. In the meantime, if someone wants to hit some of those sites and share what you find, great.

... to be continued.

OK, back to who's handling the contracts:

For Alabama, the FedBizOpps site says prospective contractors should "on your Company Letterhead, list your capabilities and contact information. Fax this information to: 334-409-4663 Attention: FEMA Contract"
The state's government procurement page offers a guide to the bureauracy, and a list of active state contracts.

Louisiana's Disaster Recovery Index has links for contractors, and sample contracts.

In Mississippi, the state Board of Contractors has necessary information.

Florida has a Disaster Contractors Network.

... to be continued

Posted by jcb at September 10, 2005 01:16 PM