IG: Millions in ice allowed to melt during Isaac
BATON ROUGE - Millions of pounds of ice from Hurricane Isaac were allowed to melt away following the storm, according to a report by the Office of the State Inspector General.
According to the report, the Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness bought 45 million pounds of ice before the storm hit for $17.4 million. The cost totaled $28 for each bag, after adding extra costs for things like transportation and storage.
According to the report, only $2.3 million worth of ice was actually given to parishes and the rest was not used.
GOHSEP was not able to return the ice, due to sanitation and storage problems. The report found the state instead spent $7.5 million to let the ice melt at an unrefrigerated warehouse outside of New Orleans.
GOHSEP said it was was a cheaper solution than having it sit in refrigerated trucks, racking up further charges. They said the state tried to give away as much ice as possible to restaurants, seafood suppliers and other industries.
A GOHSEP spokesperson said projecting the need of ice during a storm is difficult, but GOHSEP has made changes to handle situations better in the future.
The state did try to give away as much ice as possible to private restaurants, seafood suppliers and other ice suppliers.