Sens. Rick Scott and Gary Peters Applaud Passage of Bipartisan Bill to Mitigate Waste, Fraud and Abuse Following Natural Disasters

December 19, 2023

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Rick Scott applauded the passage of his bipartisan Disaster Contract Improvement Act with Senators Gary Peters and Jacky Rosen to improve the disaster contracting process on the federal, state and local levels of government following natural disasters and mitigate waste, fraud and abuse. The bill aims to protect victims of natural disasters by ensuring post-disaster services are delivered quickly and taxpayer dollars are spent solely on helping impacted communities. The Disaster Contract Improvement Act was approved by the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC) earlier this year.


Senator Rick Scott said, “Florida is no stranger to natural disasters. But thankfully, Florida is resilient because of the intense preparation that goes into our disaster readiness planning. Sadly, even when we prepare, all too often we have seen waste, fraud and abuse following storms. It hurts our families, local governments, and the American taxpayer. My bill, the Disaster Contract Improvement Act, will help stop this waste and make sure that every dollar is spent with care, preserving resources for future disaster response efforts. I want to applaud its passage and thank Chairman Peters and Senator Rosen for joining me in this good, bipartisan bill. The Disaster Contract Improvement Act is a win for American taxpayers.”


The Disaster Contract Improvement Act:

  • Establishes oversight on debris removal through the creation of an advisory working group comprised of representatives from FEMA, the Army Corps of Engineers, states and local governments, the USDA Natural Resources and Conservation Service, as well as subject matter experts, including those in the debris services contractor industry.
  • Requires the FEMA Administrator, no later than one year after the bill’s enactment and in consultation with the advisory working group, to develop and implement guidance and procedures with respect to the oversight and costs associated with debris removal contracts entered into under the public assistance grant program.
  • Requires the FEMA Administrator to conduct training and outreach to State, Tribal and Local Governments on any new guidance developed under this program.
  • Requires the GAO to conduct further study on the Debris Removal Advance Contracting process to improve oversight and prevent fraud, waste and abuse across the entire system.