A billion dollars for flood recovery coming to Louisiana

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Image from Louisiana flood of 2016

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) – The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is giving Louisiana $1.2 billion to help communities recover from the historic floods of March and August.

Governor John Bel Edwards said in a press release, “While it is not everything we need, it is a significant milestone in our recovery.”

HUD announced the new funds today (Dec. 23). In October, HUD promised $438 million dollars for flood recovery. This brings Louisiana’s total to more than $1.65 billion in recovery funds.

The state set up the Restore Louisiana Task Force to decide how the money should be spent. The task force includes politicians, business owners, and community leaders who hope to submit a spending plan to HUD in January. The task force will meet in Livingston Parish January 6, 2017.

In August, the federal government declared major disasters in 20 parishes after heavy rains flooded more than 100,000 houses, according to a report by Louisiana Economic Development. Tangipahoa, St. Helena, East Baton Rouge and Livingston Parishes were particularly hit hard by the floods.

HUD gave out $1.8 billion today to states “in the most impacted and distressed areas” that experienced presidentially declared disasters this year.  West Virginia, Florida, Texas, North Carolina, and South Carolina also received recovery funds.

Gov. Edwards says he is confident that Louisiana will receive more help when the new Congress convenes next year.