Covering Louisiana

Jul 19, 2013 11:58 AM by AP(PHOTO COURTESY: WIKIPEDIA)

Terrebonne Parish closer to reinforcing buildings

HOUMA, La. (AP) - After years of deliberation, Terrebonne Parish is inching its way toward getting final approval from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to make public buildings in Terrebonne Parish more resistant to hurricanes.

The Courier reports the parish has been working with FEMA since 2009, after hurricanes Gustav and Ike, to get a $5 million grant needed to harden several public buildings.

Terrebonne Parish Manager Al Levron said he understands FEMA is a large organization but stressed the importance of reinforcing public buildings in the event of another hurricane.

"This has been a frustrating example of governmental bureaucracy, and we need to get this accomplished," he said.

On Tuesday, parish officials held a summit with representatives of the Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness and FEMA to review the final cost of the projects and to work through some of the remaining issues.

The work would include upgrading windows, hardening exteriors and bolstering roofs.

The first set of upgrades, which parish officials expect will finally be approved by FEMA within a few months, include the Government Tower in Houma, the Houma-Terrebonne Civic Center, the Houma Police Department and the Houma Generating Station.

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