Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Brock Long was a passenger in a government vehicle when it collided with another car on Oct. 27, 2017, but his name was left off of the collision report, people familiar with the accident told Reuters.
A Department of Homeland Security (DHS) probe into Long’s travel expenses examined the accident and the omission of Long’s name. The DHS oversees FEMA and began to investigate the agency’s chief over allegations of improperly using agency resources. (RELATED: Report: Trump Considered Sacking Brock Long As Florence Barreled In)
A FEMA official involved in the crash omitted Long’s name from the report at request of a supervisor, the anonymous official told Reuters. All occupants involved in a car crash with a government vehicle are required to be reported, sources told Reuters.
It is not clear, however, if the revelation about the car accident involving Long changes his precarious situation with DHS investigators and ethics officials. FEMA Assistant Administrator John Veatch was driving the car when the accident happened. Veatch was placed on administrative leave Sept. 21.
President Donald Trump considered firing Long before Hurricane Florence made landfall on the North Carolina coast Sept. 14. Long reportedly routinely drove government vehicles 400 miles back and forth from his home in North Carolina to Washington, D.C., racking up a taxpayer cost of about $151,000. DHS attorneys and the DHS inspector general warned Long that his trips violated federal law, according to The Wall Street Journal.
DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen ordered Long on Sept. 21 to repay the money he spent on his trips home and he would be allowed to keep his job leading FEMA. Long has garnered respect from longtime FEMA employees and he is known for capably handling large-scale disaster responses for the agency, The Washington Post reports.
Former Department of Health and Human Services (DHS) Secretary Tom Price resigned in September 2017 after racking up over $1 million in improper travel expenses. Former Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt resigned from his post in August while under scrutiny for his spending habits.
FEMA nor the DHS Office of Inspector General did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
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