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James Lee Witt

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 11, 1995 | BETH SHUSTER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The nation's disaster czar came to Los Angeles to talk about one catastrophe Tuesday but found himself caught right smack in the middle of another emergency in the making. James Lee Witt, director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, was supposed to be talking to students at Kennedy High School in Granada Hills about recovery efforts from the Jan. 17 earthquake. But the subject quickly turned to the drenching rain outside. "Are any of you flooded out today?"
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NEWS
April 21, 1995 | RICHARD SIMON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
During his two years as administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, James Lee Witt has presided over 62 disasters: fires, floods, earthquakes, hurricanes and tornadoes. But he had never seen anything like what he saw here Thursday: a disaster caused not by nature but by "somebody meaner than hell."
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NEWS
February 5, 1995 | SAM JAMESON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Evading questions about the Japanese government's handling of the Kobe earthquake, the head of the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency ended a tour of the devastated area Saturday with a warning that the same kind of unexpected jolt could strike the middle of the United States. "In 1811 and 1812, there was an 8.1-magnitude earthquake on the New Madrid fault that ran the Mississippi River backwards for three days," James Lee Witt said in an interview with The Times.
NEWS
February 5, 1995 | SAM JAMESON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Evading questions about the Japanese government's handling of the Kobe earthquake, the head of the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency ended a tour of the devastated area Saturday with a warning that the same kind of unexpected jolt could strike the middle of the United States. "In 1811 and 1812, there was an 8.1-magnitude earthquake on the New Madrid fault that ran the Mississippi River backwards for three days," James Lee Witt said in an interview with The Times.
NEWS
April 8, 1994 | ALAN C. MILLER and CARLA RIVERA, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
In his tumultuous first year as the federal government's disaster czar, James Lee Witt has survived a baptism by flood, wildfire, earthquake, ice storm and, most recently, tornado. More important, he has rescued the Federal Emergency Management Agency from the edge of disaster, disarming lawmakers who suggested disbanding FEMA after its inept performance during Hurricane Andrew in 1992.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 11, 1995 | BETH SHUSTER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The nation's disaster czar came to Los Angeles to talk about one catastrophe on Tuesday but found himself caught smack in the middle of another. James Lee Witt, director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, was supposed to be talking to students at Kennedy High School in Granada Hills about recovery efforts from last January's earthquake. But the subject quickly turned to the drenching rain. "Are any of you flooded out today?" the soft-spoken Witt asked the assembled students.
NEWS
April 21, 1995 | RICHARD SIMON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
During his two years as administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, James Lee Witt has presided over 62 disasters: fires, floods, earthquakes, hurricanes and tornadoes. But he had never seen anything like what he saw here Thursday: a disaster caused not by nature but by "somebody meaner than hell."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 27, 1994 | SUSAN BYRNES, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Standing before a tumbledown Sherman Oaks apartment building, Federal Emergency Management Agency Director James Lee Witt vowed Sunday to speed funding for fencing and private guards at quake-ravaged buildings throughout the city that have become havens for thieves, vandals and vagrants. "We can help," Witt told reporters on a nearly deserted block of Colbath Avenue, where every apartment building is wrapped with a chain-link fence and red-tagged. "When the proposal comes in, we'll act."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 27, 1995
The Federal Emergency Management Agency will give quake-damaged Santa Monica College almost $23 million for a new science building and some temporary facilities, the head of the agency said Wednesday. In a visit to the campus, FEMA Director James Lee Witt pledged more than $20 million to replace the school's science building, which was damaged in the January, 1994, earthquake and had to be demolished.
NEWS
February 27, 1996 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
In a symbolic gesture, President Clinton made the Federal Emergency Management Agency part of his Cabinet. He attributed the move to an unusually high number of disasters in recent years. FEMA Director James Lee Witt will not receive an increase in salary or assume a different title, said White House Press Secretary Mike McCurry. By law, there are 14 members of the Cabinet. Witt joins 10 officials to whom Clinton has extended similar Cabinet status.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 11, 1995 | BETH SHUSTER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The nation's disaster czar came to Los Angeles to talk about one catastrophe Tuesday but found himself caught right smack in the middle of another emergency in the making. James Lee Witt, director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, was supposed to be talking to students at Kennedy High School in Granada Hills about recovery efforts from the Jan. 17 earthquake. But the subject quickly turned to the drenching rain outside. "Are any of you flooded out today?"
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 11, 1995 | BETH SHUSTER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The nation's disaster czar came to Los Angeles to talk about one catastrophe on Tuesday but found himself caught smack in the middle of another. James Lee Witt, director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, was supposed to be talking to students at Kennedy High School in Granada Hills about recovery efforts from last January's earthquake. But the subject quickly turned to the drenching rain. "Are any of you flooded out today?" the soft-spoken Witt asked the assembled students.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 27, 1994 | SUSAN BYRNES, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Standing before a tumbledown Sherman Oaks apartment building, Federal Emergency Management Agency Director James Lee Witt vowed Sunday to speed funding for fencing and private guards at quake-ravaged buildings throughout the city that have become havens for thieves, vandals and vagrants. "We can help," Witt told reporters on a nearly deserted block of Colbath Avenue, where every apartment building is wrapped with a chain-link fence and red-tagged. "When the proposal comes in, we'll act."
NEWS
April 8, 1994 | ALAN C. MILLER and CARLA RIVERA, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
In his tumultuous first year as the federal government's disaster czar, James Lee Witt has survived a baptism by flood, wildfire, earthquake, ice storm and, most recently, tornado. More important, he has rescued the Federal Emergency Management Agency from the edge of disaster, disarming lawmakers who suggested disbanding FEMA after its inept performance during Hurricane Andrew in 1992.
NEWS
August 19, 1998 | From Times Wire Reports
With more than 1,000 tornadoes already recorded this year, government officials announced an effort to get people to build "safe rooms," modern versions of the storm cellar. In 1997, 120 people have died in tornadoes. James Lee Witt, director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, announced at the National Tornado Forum in Washington, D.C., the development of plans for safe rooms in homes in tornado-prone areas.
NEWS
July 28, 1998 | From Times Staff Reports
Temperatures in north Texas reached triple digits for the 22nd consecutive day, and a top forecaster speculated the heat wave and drought could surpass the scorching summer of 1980 as the hottest ever in Texas. The heat wave is blamed for at least 94 deaths in the state since June 1, $1.5 billion in agricultural damage and more than 6,765 wildfires.
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