At least two former clients of Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator William “Brock” Long have received FEMA contracts totaling more than $14 million since his arrival at the agency, federal documents show.
The contracts raise “potential concerns with regard to his impartiality,” said one attorney with the Campaign Legal Center, a government-ethics watchdog group.
Long joined FEMA in June 2017 after six years as executive vice president at Hagerty Consulting, a disaster consulting firm. The disclosure form for Long’s nomination lists both Booz Allen Hamilton and Eagle Hill Consulting as clients of Hagerty Consulting to whom Long “personally provided services,” each of which was responsible for at least $5,000 worth of income to Long.
The form covers both direct payments from clients and indirect payments made via the filer’s employer. Long identified twenty Hagerty Consulting clients as sources of compensation exceeding $5,000 annually, but the form does not require filers to specify the actual amounts. Long listed his annual salary as $200,417.
Sixteen of Long’s clients were government agencies or semi-public entities. The four private clients were Booz Allen Hamilton, Eagle Hill Consulting, a California mall, and an Illinois music festival.
On April 24, 2017, in a letter to the Homeland Security office that oversees FEMA ethics issues, Long wrote that “to avoid any actual or apparent conflict of interest in the event that I am confirmed…I will not participate personally and substantially in any particular matter involving specific parties in which I know a former client of mine is a party or represents a party for a period of one year after I last provided service to that client, unless I am first authorized to participate.”
Long’s disclosure form does not indicate when his work for Booz Allen Hamilton and Eagle Hill Consulting occurred. Long was confirmed as FEMA’s administrator on June 20, 2017.
Guidelines for the form require including all clients from the year of filing and the two preceding calendar years. If Long’s work for Booz Allen Hamilton and Eagle Hill were done early enough in the reporting period, they would fall outside the scope of his recusal from matters concerning former clients for a period of one year after his last work for them.