[StBernard] Governor Blanco thanks 110th Congress for leading the way to a strong Gulf Coast recovery
westley at da-parish.com
Mon Aug 13 20:51:21 EDT 2007
Governor Blanco thanks 110th Congress for leading the way to a strong
Gulf Coast recovery
MONDAY, AUGUST 13, 2007
NEW ORLEANS - Standing today with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, US Reps William Jefferson and Charlie Melancon and other members of Congress visiting the Gulf Coast, Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco thanked the 110th Congress for keeping its promise to the people of Louisiana.
"The new Congressional leadership said they would prioritize a strong Gulf Coast recovery, and they delivered," Governor Blanco told them. "I came to Washington in February with a long list of requests for the new leadership. In just a few short months, this new Congress provided urgent relief that Louisiana had been requesting since the days of the storms. As Louisiana approaches the second Anniversary of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, we do so with confidence that the 110th Congress will stand by us for the duration of our recovery. Thank you, 110th Congress, for leading the way to a strong Gulf Coast recovery."
The Congressional Delegation is visiting New Orleans as part of a Gulf Coast tour to assess the impact of recovery legislation and discuss new ways to build a partnership for long-term recovery as the Hurricane Katrina anniversary nears.
At a morning policy conference with local and state officials, Gov. Blanco outlined examples of a long list of quick actions by the 110th Congress to help the Gulf Coast:
Provided 100 percent federal cost-share for Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, saving Louisiana close to $700 million, and cutting the red tape from the CDBG Public Assistance Match.
Allowed forgiveness of Community Disaster Loans. Lifted the provision prohibiting Louisiana's impacted communities from applying for relief.
Extended the deadline for the Gulf Opportunity Zone Tax Credits, facilitating the rehabilitation of Louisiana's affordable housing stock. Also provided additional funding for Small Business Administration disaster loans.
Provided additional federal resources to combat crime in New Orleans and bolster the city's criminal justice system.
Provided funding to assist in teacher and principal education recruitment efforts, allowing Louisiana to attract new leaders to recovering schools.
Extended the Social Services Block Grant funds for one year, allowing additional resources and flexibility in providing critically needed social services - specifically programs for mental health and child welfare.
The House passed the first Water Resources Development Act in seven years. This bill authorizes billions in urgently needed hurricane protection funding for Louisiana, including strengthening the state's levee system and closing the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet.
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