Response to Tornadoes a Test of FEMA; WashPost, April 29, 2011. In addition to describing the visit of President Obama and FEMA Dir. Craig Fugate, the article goes on to note:
FEMA’s image is still suffering in the south following its botched response to Hurricane Katrina and other deadly storms in 2005. Fugate stressed that his agency “is in a support role” and taking cues from state leaders.
Federal assistance would be “for recovery activities,” Fugate said. “That would come from the governor through our regional offices and then to the president.”
The storms come as the federal government is monitoring the first-ever major earthquake drill across 11 midwestern states, including storm-ravaged Alabama and Tennessee. Fugate said the drill will continue as scheduled.
“We do have to be prepared for concurrent natural disasters occurring in this country, earthquakes being one of them,” he said, noting that FEMA is also providing assistance to wildfire relief efforts in Florida, New Mexico and Texas and dealing with the aftermath of severe flooding in other states.