Nagin Testifies in DC about Stafford Act

Mar 5, 2010

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin is testifying in Washington, D.C. for changes in the way the federal government responds to a disaster.

Mayor Nagin has testified before Congress more than a dozen times since Hurricane Katrina in 2005. He's currently chairman of the U.S. Conference of Mayors task force on reforming the Stafford Act.

Nagin said the Stafford Act, which supports preparation for and response to disasters, doesn't work for a catastrophe, such as Katrina. He is calling on Congress to come up with a catastrophe designation allowing the president to waive regulations and automatically provide 100 percent federal funds for eligible work.

He is also recommending that a $5 million cap on Community Disaster Loans be removed. Nagin said that while Congress made changes for communities hit by Katrina, allowing loans of up to 50 percent of operating budgets, the system itself hasn't changed.