Bush formally requests levee money

From Scout:

The Bush administration Tuesday formally asked Congress to approve the additional $2.2 billion experts say is needed to improve hurricane and storm protection for much of Southeastern Louisiana, but with the caveat that state and local taxpayers come up with a $270 million match.

Bush asked that the money come out of the $9.4 billion requested for FEMA…

Louisiana’s two senators, Democrat Mary Landrieu and Republican David Vitter, praised the White House announcement and said that they “could live” with the FEMA cuts. Vitter said that most FEMA disaster spending is mandated by law and that Congress will eventually have to recoup any shortfalls.

The 2.2 billion does not include levee protection for Plaquemines Parish but Vitter plans to seek an amendment to allocate some funds for that. Vitter also plans to seek an amendment calling for starting the process of closing MRGO.

Meanwhile Landrieu says she will still hold her perogatives to hold up Bush nominees in order to gain support for “revenue sharing — giving the state a portion of offshore royalty payments for oil and gas exploration — so that the state can pay its share of future flood-control and coastal restoration projects. “