disaster aid

Tegan Wendland / WWNO

A federal audit says FEMA should stop sending money to the City of New Orleans for repairing road and water-system damage sustained during hurricanes Katrina and Rita almost 12 years ago.

 

FEMA disagrees with the findings, and the city plans to press forward with repairs.

 

In order to get money from FEMA to repair its streets and sewer lines, city officials had to prove the damage was caused directly by hurricanes Katrina and Rita. After reviewing documents and consulting with engineers, FEMA agreed. It pledged to give the city $2.04 billion in December 2015.

Small businesses in 11 Louisiana parishes are now eligible for low-interest federal disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Alfred E. Judd, director of the SBA's Disaster Field Operations Center-West, said in a news release Tuesday that the loans can offset economic losses caused by the drought that began June 19.

The eligible parishes are Morehouse, Richland, Union, West Carroll, Caldwell, Claiborne, East Carroll, Franklin, Lincoln, Madison and Ouachita. Three neighboring counties in Arkansas — Ashley, Chicot and Union — also are eligible.