‘Flood City Hall’ protest set for Saturday at Duncan Plaza

Flooding on St Ann in Mid-City submitted by Susan Messer

NEW ORLEANS — Are you sick of the news about flooding and the widespread problems with the Sewerage and Water Board?

There’s a protest Saturday at Duncan Plaza for residents to voice their concerns.

The rally will start at noon.

Organizers say the protest is out of frustration for what they call a lack of leadership in Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s office.

Landrieu, speaking at a press conference Wednesday afternoon, has taken “ultimate responsibility” for the pumping station failures that contributed to citywide flooding Aug. 5.

More than 800 flood claims have been filed in New Orleans, though that number might not represent all the damage from the flood.

The flooding — and the Sewerage and Water Board’s response — has prompted the retirement of Cedric Grant, the S&WB director, as well as terminations of several employees and the resignations of board members.

The Sewerage and Water Board initially claimed that all pumps were functioning properly and attributed the widespread damage to climate change. It was later learned that up to 17 pumps were not functioning at full capacity during the rain event.

The city’s problems worsened a few days later, when a fire damaged the city’s only working turbine that operates the city’s water pumps. Backup generators and parts have been ordered, and repairs are under way.

Meanwhile, four public meetings are scheduled this week to provide information and resources to victims of the flood. Other community organizations will also be on hand to talk about additional services. Click here for more information about the public meetings.