Lawmakers Call for Overhauling FEMA

February 19, 2006 - Posted at 1:20 p.m. CST

WASHINGTON (AP) _ At least one Democratic senator is calling for

big changes at the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Connecticut's Joseph Lieberman tells ABC's ``This Week'' that

the agency has become a ``joke,'' especially to people in the Gulf

Coast region.

He says the agency should be dissolved and rebuilt before the

upcoming hurricane season.

But Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff says it's too

close to the next hurricane season to start retooling the agency.

Chertoff told NBC's ``Meet the Press'' that ``nature doesn't

wait for us to do yet another reorganization.''

Chertoff, the Homeland Security Department and FEMA were roundly

criticized in a House report last week on the government response

to Hurricane Katrina last summer.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)