Was a bag of ice after Hurricane Katrina a luxury or a necessity? FEMA apparently believes it was a luxury. This comes after FEMA was criticized for letting thousands of pounds of ice go to waste following Katrina. So instead of trying to fix its distribution problem, FEMA says it will no longer supply ice to hurricane victims.
We disagree and are pleased that U.S. Representative Gene Taylor has taken the Federal Government to task for making such a short sighted decision. Right after Katrina, thousands of South Mississippians spent hours in lines to get a bag of ice so they could keep what little food they had from spoiling. In addition, many needed ice to prevent certain medicines from going bad.
FEMA says local and state government should now take up this responsibility. After Katrina all of our local cities had so much damage there was no way they could have provided ice to anyone. The same was true for local suppliers.
Congressman Taylor is right when he says, FEMA's new policy of making local governments responsible for ice after a storm will add layers of complexity, bureaucracy and delay to what should be a simple and straightforward task.
We invite the FEMA officials who made this decision to come to South Mississippi and walk the areas where Katrina sweep away hundreds of homes. If they do they will no doubt agree that a small bag of ice is not a luxury.
That's our opinion, we would like to hear yours. Email your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org.