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Puerto Ricans line up to purchase ice in September after Hurricane Maria. Photo: Ricardo Arduengo / AFP / Getty Images

FEMA gave a $156 million contract to a single-employee Georgia company (which had five previously-terminated government contracts) to provide 30 million meals for Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria, according to a report from The New York Times. The company only delivered 50,000 meals and the contract was canceled last October.

Why it matters: Risky contracts awarded in the earliest days after Maria, like Whitefish Energy, indicate that both the federal government and local entities in Puerto Rico simply weren't equipped for the scale of the disaster.

Go deeper

Updated 12 hours ago - Technology

From Malcolm X to "Free Britney," new media shapes the justice system

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

True crime documentaries, podcasts and social media campaigns are bringing new attention to real-world legal proceedings — and are often affecting the outcome.

Why it matters: New media platforms can instantly put a national spotlight on cases that have long been forgotten or buried under red tape.

Updated 14 hours ago - Health

The next big bottleneck in the global vaccination effort

Illustration: Rae Cook/Axios

The world still needs more coronavirus vaccines, but an additional bottleneck has emerged in many low-income countries: They need help getting shots in arms.

Why it matters: Increasing vaccination rates across the world is both a humanitarian necessity and the best way to prevent dangerous new variants from emerging, but it increasingly requires complex problem-solving.

Updated 15 hours ago - Health

COVID-19 Omicron variant cases identified in Europe, U.K.

People wearing masks walk in London on Nov. 25. Photo: Li Ying/Xinhua via Getty Images

Health officials in the United Kingdom, Italy and Germany announced on Saturday that they've detected the first known cases of the new COVID-19 Omicron variant.

Why it matters: The discoveries come as the world scrambles to respond to concerns over the new variant, discovered in South Africa earlier this week.