From nonstop insults hurled at the mayor of San Juan to hurling paper towels at victims of the Hurricane Maria, President Donald Trump’s response to the storm that ravaged Puerto Rico was beyond disgusting, but not surprising in the least. But even more disgusting is the scam that a contractor pulled after FEMA awarded that contractor $156 million to provide 30 million meals to Puerto Rico pulled.
After conducting a thorough investigation, the New York Times discovered that Tiffany Brown, an Atlanta entrepreneur and government contractor who owns Tribute Contracting LLC, only provided the suffering people of Puerto Rico a measly 50,000 self-heating meals.
According to the Times’ investigative reporting, Brown hired a small wedding catering company and a Texas nonprofit that shipped the food to a Houston food bank during Hurricane Harvey to provide the meals. However, Brown soon discovered that FEMA suspended her contract after so blatantly failing to live up to her end of the bargain.
“‘Do not ship another meal. Your contract is terminated,’ wrote Carolyn Ward, a FEMA official who handled the contract with Brown’s company.”
Brown is determined to appeal this suspension and is pursuing a $70 million settlement. She claims that FEMA never said the meals had to be self-heating and that Tribute messed everything up by proving meals separate from their heating pouches. The matter is currently being looked at by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
Democrats on the committee were very displeased with FEMA, strongly criticizing them in a letter to committee chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.).
“‘Clearly, Tribute did not have sufficient financial resources of its own to support this contract,’ they wrote, according to the Times. ‘FEMA should have raised serious questions about whether the company could meet the contrract terms — especially since the contract concerned such a critical need.”
This isn’t the first instance of greed and corruption permeating the recovery efforts in Puerto Rico. Whitefish International, a small Montana firm with ties to President Trump, was heavily criticized for winning a contract with Puerto Rico’s Government-owned utility company despite having little to no experience.
Featured image via YouTube Video.