BATON ROUGE (PRESS RELEASE) – Saturday, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced that his request for a fourth extension of the federal temporary housing program for survivors of the August 2016 floods has been approved by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) through April 30, 2019.
Edwards requested that homeowners be given additional time and the low rent for the Manufactured Housing Units (MHUs) be retained as survivors rebuild their homes that were either severely damaged or destroyed by the floods. FEMA has noted this will be the final extension, and the current rent structure will remain in place. Multiple state agencies have been working with FEMA staff, local officials and volunteer agencies to assist the families remaining in this program. These efforts will be expanded, and each family’s case will be evaluated to ensure the best possible outcome by the final end date.
“We are grateful to FEMA for granting this request and recognizing the needs of our people as they continue recovering,” said Gov. Edwards. “While I know the homeowners who remain in temporary housing would like nothing better than to be in their homes for the holidays, this extension will give them more time to continue rebuilding. We will continue to work with these families along with FEMA and other partners to use this final extension period to identify and implement the most appropriate and affordable housing solutions available.”
As of December 20, 2018, there are 382 families occupying the MHUs. At the state’s request, FEMA provided the units as a last resort to some survivors who were unable to find temporary housing. The state continues to use various programs to assist homeowners, including the Restore Homeowner Assistance Program to help survivors get back into their homes and the Rapid Rehousing Program, which provides eligible families with a housing voucher that matches them with available housing resources.
According to the Governor’s Office, more than 4,200 households, which make up about 92 percent of those who received FEMA-provided mobile homes, have recovered and returned home or found other permanent housing.