Some GOOD News for NOLA for Once

From Scout:

It isn’t perfect and it is only a start but this is good news for NOLA. And ya gotta LOVE the name of Nagin’s plan to buy out home owners

In a major development that could at last provide definitive options to New Orleans-area homeowners sitting in limbo, the leaders of the five metropolitan parishes hardest-hit by Hurricane Katrina have signed on to a plan to offer owners of flood-damaged houses the choice of a buyout at full, pre-storm market value or a renovation grant to cover most repairs.

The program, which New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin has cheekily titled the “Failed Levees Homeowner Recovery Program,” is the most detailed blueprint for making homeowners whole since the apparent death of legislation by U.S. Rep. Richard Baker that would have allowed owners of flood-ravaged homes to recoup 60 percent of their equity.

The new plan, surprisingly, would be more generous than Baker’s in some cases, although probably not in the case of high-priced homes or homes with large mortgages. The grants, whether for buyouts or renovations, would be capped at $150,000, while the Baker legislation would have settled the mortgages of homeowners who sold, regardless of the size of the mortgage. Under the new proposal, those with mortgages well above $150,000 might be more apt to use the money to renovate and continue paying their mortgage, rather than take the buyout.

There are still numerous caveats: Most important, the plan needs the approval of key state officials and the White House. Nagin, who acknowledged that the initiative is a work in progress, said it is designed to jump-start the region’s moribund economy by putting money in the hands of homeowners quickly.

Several state and local representatives attended a meeting at the White House Sunday to discuss the plan and other items, including banker Joe Canizaro, a leader of Nagin’s rebuilding commission, and Sean Reilly, a key member of Gov. Kathleen Blanco’s Louisiana Recovery Authority. It was unclear late Sunday how the Bush administration reacted to the plan or what the next step may be. (For details of the plan read the rest here)

Bush who killed the Baker bill had better get on board or STFU that Louisiana doesn’t have a plan.

Worth repeating….Failed Levees Homeowner Recovery Program

HeeHee I love it. I’m doing the Snoopy dance hearing this and knowing Elmer Fudd Cheney will be the butt of every joke tomorrow.