Remember that nice thing you thought happened for Katrina exiles?Forget about it…
WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal appeals court told the Bush administration Friday that it does not need to immediately restart a housing program for thousands of Hurricane Katrina victims.
The ruling suspends an order by U.S. District Judge Richard Leon, who said last month that the Federal Emergency Management Agency violated the Constitution when it eliminated short-term housing assistance. Leon said the agency didn’t explain its reasoning and provided victims only confusing computer-generated codes to explain its decision.
Under Leon’s order, FEMA appeared on track to restore housing payments to families in Texas.
FEMA did not immediately say how it would respond to the decision but, with the court order on hold, it can tell Texas that it no longer plans to make the payments.
“That’s FEMA’s Christmas present to the people of Texas and the United States,” said Kevin Whelan, a spokesman for the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, which brought the lawsuit. “They managed to appeal long enough to be able to deny housing funding.” (emphasis mine)
Man it’s a cruel world—–