Flood Recovery

Jessica Rosgaard / WWNO

Two years ago, tens of thousands of homes in southeast Louisiana were flooded by historic rainfall. Recovery continues, but fewer homeowners than anticipated are applying for financial assistance from the state. Capitol Access caught up with Pat Forbes, Executive Director of the Louisiana Office of Community Development, to discuss what’s been done and what’s left to do.

Jessica Rosgaard/WWNO

Louisiana’s Congressional delegation is working to reform laws to help victims recover from natural disasters. 

Around the country, hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent to buy back individual homes from people who have flooded repeatedly. But buying out a whole neighborhood is uncommon. Louisiana's 2016 flood seems to be changing that for two communities. In Pointe Coupee and Ascension Parishes, a buyout program first used in neighborhoods after Superstorm Sandy may offer a new option to homeowners who have lived with escalating risk for decades.

Wallis Watkins

Pat Forbes, Louisiana Office of Community Development Director, updated the Legislature’s Homeland Security Committee yesterday on recovery from the 2016 floods.

“We know that recovery - disaster recovery especially for homeowners - is never fast enough. We’re 14 months after the August flood,17 months after the March flood," explains Forbes.


C-SPAN

Congress has voted to give victims of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria some tax relief as they recover from the disastrous storms. But taxpayers in Louisiana who flooded in 2016 won’t get the same assistance.


Martine Turner and Kellie Bertrand of the Louisiana Spirit Crisis Counseling Center talk about mental health issues stemming from the historic flood of 2016.


Office of Community Development Executive Director Pat Forbes talks about work remaining in the aftermath of the 2016 flood.


Traumatic experiences like major floods can have psychological ramifications. Since Hurricane Katrina, FEMA has sent money to Louisiana to provide counseling for survivors struggling with poor mental health every time a disaster hits the state.

A program called Louisiana Spirit has been providing that service to victims near Baton Rouge since the floods last August. But as the one-year anniversary approaches, the program is winding down — leaving some victims in the lurch.

Nicole Sweazy of the Louisiana Housing Authority talks about the shelter program utilitzed after the historic flood of 2016.


Flood Recovery: Not-So-Rapid Rehousing

Aug 15, 2017

Federal aid helped pay for hotels for thousands of Louisianans after last year's flood. Until May, the short-term program help people find shelter, especially low-income renters. Now a state-managed program is still filling in the gaps, trying to give more permanent homes to families washed out last year — including a single mother in Baton Rouge.

Pages