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Conservatively liberal, moderately well-educated, and highly opinionated...

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Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Plan C?

Well now. This is starting to look pretty bad, overall:

In a severe blow to state and local plans for rebuilding hurricane-devastated areas, the Bush administration Tuesday came out against a homeowner bailout proposal that many in Louisiana saw as the key to economic recovery and the rebirth of a redesigned New Orleans.

Is that it? Bye-bye Baker Bill?

Louisiana, it sounds to me as if there’s a message being broadcast: That’s it for money from the federal government.

Last Friday, there was this:

Echoing a common sentiment in Congress, Davis said that for the time being he was satisfied with the $2.9 billion Congress has allocated to build the levees to Category 3 strength by the start of hurricane season June 1.

Now, about the Baker Bill, there’s this:

Donald Powell, President Bush’s choice to oversee the Gulf Coast recovery from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, said that grant money already appropriated by Congress — as much as $6.2 billion for Louisiana — would be “sufficient” to take care of homeowners who suffered the most in the storm.

Just at the moment, the Bring New Orleans Back Commission has two choices: abandon the dream to haphazard rebuilding and hope for the best, or fire up the eminent domain engines… unless there’s another possibility?

Joe Canizaro, who chaired the BNOB’s land-use committee, has said there are ways besides the Baker bill to accomplish buyouts.

Let’s hope Joe was serious about a Plan “C”.