BATON ROUGE — Gov. John Bel Edwards released the following statement on the announcement that Louisiana would receive $438 million of the $500 million Congress approved last month for flood recovery. The announcement comes two months after historic flooding hit South Louisiana, however, the assistance will be for both the March and August floods.
“Historic flooding in Louisiana nearly crippled communities in every corner of our state, but thanks to the hard work of the entire Louisiana congressional delegation and the administration, our state is receiving financial assistance in record time,” Edwards said. “This is just the beginning, but it is a critical first step in getting help to Louisiana families and businesses that need it most. I am grateful to our entire delegation and the president and his administration for making this a priority. I look forward to working with them after the election on a comprehensive recovery package that will address Louisiana’s long-term recovery needs.”
Gov. Edwards, Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser, Agriculture Commissioner Mike Strain and the entire Louisiana congressional delegation worked together to get this assistance approved before Congress adjourned in September. Gov. Edwards made three trips to Washington, D.C. to lobby members of Congress on the disaster package. During those trips, he secured commitments from congressional leaders and the administration that this would serve as a down payment on assistance, with a more comprehensive package to be considered after the election.
Before the funds are released to Louisiana, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) will publish guidelines for how the money may be spent and the State will respond by submitting an action plan for HUD approval.