Regional leaders propose new game plan for flood protection - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

Regional leaders propose new game plan for flood protection

Elmwood, La. -

Leaders from 10 metro-area parishes have been brainstorming, looking for ways to better protect their communities from flooding. 

They say the same approach used to make billions of dollars in flood improvements in Orleans, St Bernard, and Jefferson Parishes needs to be used to protect other vulnerable areas.

LaPlace, Madisonville, Lafitte and Slidell, for instance, lie outside the new flood protection systems.  They were hit worse by Hurricane Isaac than by Katrina.  Now, officials from those communities want action.

10 parish leaders from across the region came together Tuesday in a rare show of unity, calling for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to adopt a fast-track, post-Katrina type of approach to solve regional flooding issues currently outside the protection system.

The group has come out with a 10-point plan, calling for everything from updated storm modeling by the National Weather Service to state forgiveness of the local match on FEMA reimbursements. The plan also calls for basics like working flood gauges, which failed during Isaac, and expedited funding for Corps projects.

Regional leaders say improvements now could save three dollars down the road for every dollar spent, and they say it doesn't make sense to pinch pennies or waste time with so many lives and property at stake.

The plan, called the Storm Defense Compact, also calls for revisions in the state's contraflow plan, since some sections of Interstates 10 and 55 went underwater and were unusable.

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