Livingston Parish officials claim lies, bungling and withholding of information are grounds for reversal of the Federal Emergency Management Agency's decision to deny $46 million in waterway cleanup costs Livingston incurred after Hurricane Gustav.
FEMA investigators used incorrect geographic coordinates and couldn't find streams where work was done after the 2008 hurricane, but still ruled the streams posed no flooding danger to inhabited property, according to a 76-page appeal supplement filed by the parish.
The West Feliciana Parish Police Jury has voted to give its attorney the authority to settle lawsuits related to Hurricane Gustav debris removal.
Phillips and Jordan Inc., a firm the jury chose to pick up and dispose of storm debris after the 2008 hurricane, filed suit in 2010 after being paid only a little more than half of the $4.12 million the company said it is owed.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency refused in 2009 to reimburse the parish for leaning trees and broken or partially broken limbs hanging over public rights of way that threatened public safety.
Livingston Parish will hire a lawyer to defend a $53 million lawsuit against the parish over the costs of cleaning up after Hurricane Gustav.
The Advocate reports International Equipment Distributors Inc., the parish's main contractor in the 2008 cleanup, filed suit last year claiming Livingston had paid only "a small fraction of the money it owes IED."
The Federal Emergency Management Agency has refused to pay the parish for most cleanup costs, and the parish is in the process of making a final appeal to FEMA for payment of a portion of the bills submitted by IED.
New Orleans Police Superintendent Warren Riley says his department performed well during Hurricane Gustav; he checked with the department's Public Integrity Division and no complaints have been filed against officers. He says officers will continue to concentrate on anti-looting measures. About 50 people have been arrested for multiple counts of looting, and the number of incidents is declining.
While people in New Orleans get back to their routines after Hurricane Gustav, some in the Louisiana National Guard have put their own recovery on hold while they pitch in where they're assigned.
Some members of the 141st Field Artillery unit took a break from setting up distribution points for people to pick up food and supplies to speak with WWNO. They had all been in Baghdad when Hurricane Katrina hit.
For the duration of Hurricane Gustav, WWNO will broadcast network programming. We are doing this so that our staff and their families may safely evacuate. We will return as soon as possible after the storm.
Best Wishes For Everyone's Saftey, Paul Maassen WWNO GM.
Current info on the storm http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/.
Here is a list of some of the State agencies and other hurricane related resources:
American Red Cross www.preparelouisiana.redcross.org (866) GET-INFO or (866) 438-4636