When domestic disasters occur, the federal government can provide emergency relief and assistance to state and local governments to save lives, protect property, public health and safety, and even to avert damage in the event of future disasters. Such relief can take the form of direct aid from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or other federal agencies, or disaster relief grants and subgrants to state and local governments, which can then award contracts to private entities in order to further the purpose of the grant. Federal disaster relief has obvious benefits for affected communities, but relief recipients are subject to audits and investigations for potential fraud, waste and abuse. Indeed, federal scrutiny of grant expenditures has intensified after Congress authorized billions of dollars in disaster relief to aid in the recovery from Hurricane Katrina and Super Storm Sandy and the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (DHS OIG) has become more proactive in conducting audits.
In this course, attorneys Raymond Monroe and Stephen Ramaley address the laws and regulations applicable to the expenditure of grant funding, paying particular attention to the use of grant-funded contracts as a means to accomplish grant objectives. This course draws on their experiences, as well as lessons learned from DHS OIG audit reports, to outline best practices and strategies for achieving grant objectives within the confines of the numerous and shifting regulatory regimes.
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