flood recovery

Ryan Kellman / NPR

More than 600 hurricane evacuees are still living in hotels in Lafayette and New Orleans, officials at a briefing in Lake Charles on Tuesday reported.

Back in October, Congress passed a law fixing the duplication of benefits penalty, a policy that blocked more than 6,000 homeowners who flooded in 2016 from accessing recovery grants from the state. But Louisiana homeowners impacted by the change still haven’t received the money.  

Louisiana's Severe Repetitive Loss Problem

Oct 5, 2017

Properties that flood over and over again are a longstanding problem for FEMA and the National Flood Insurance Program. Around 30,000 of the most frequently flooded homes in the country make up less than a percent of the total insured pool, but pull down around 10 percent of total claim dollars.

Wallis Watkins / WWNO

For 17 years, residents in parts of East Baton Rouge, Ascension and Livingston parishes have been paying a local tax to help fund construction of the Comite River Diversion Canal, designed to lower the flood risk of nearby homeowners. Then in 2016, record flooding hit the region — causing billions in damage. The incident only ignited the demand for answers from frustrated taxpayers.

Molly Peterson / WWNO

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.

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