Sunday, January 15, 2006

Hurry-Up And Wait

Mayor Ray Nagin want's New Orleans Residents to return to the city to rebuild. On the other hand his Bring New Orleans Back commission as well as FEMA is recommending that residents wait till the new flood maps are released. Residents that flooded now find themselves in a quandry.

They desperately want to return and rebuild their homes but don't know if their houses will have to be raised and if so, how much. Furthermore, the commission is also recommending that neighboroods prove their viability to the city in order to avoid being demolished.

Typical government operation, leave people's lives in limbo while they dither about what to do.

My suggestions that people forget about FEMA. The current flood maps from 1984, which can be seen here, is the law of the land and are to be enforced by the governing authorties. Residents should rebuild according to the 1984 maps and if the 2006 maps require your house to be raised, apply political pressure on the federal government to provided grants for people to raise their houses. After all, it's in the interest of FEMA that houses be build above base flood elevation, therefore, let FEMA pay for it.

A lot of people don't seem to realize that existing houses can be raised, even slab-on-grade, I've seen it done myself.

Ronald Reagan often said that government is not the solution to our problems, it is the problem. All levels of government now are proving him right.

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