12/17/2005

Senator Cochran Got 'er Done

Senator Thad Cochran was able to get much needed relief for the Mississippi Gulf Coast. While it wasn't the $34 billion requested, it was more than the $17 billion initially proposed by President Bush.

WASHINGTON - A $29-billion Katrina relief deal -- including a bailout of Mississippi's thousands of uninsured flood victims -- was struck between the Senate and House on tonight and is expected to be passed before Congress leaves for the year.SunHerald


The $29 billion includes funds for homeowners who did not have flood insurance and whose homes were destroyed by Hurricane Katrina's storm surge. I hope people understand that the majority of those homeowners who did not have flood insurance were told they did not need it based on the flood plain maps provided by the federal government. A lot of those homes were not even in areas prone to floods every 100 years. These funds will be put to good use.

Road and bridge repair can begin. Fire and police stations can now be rebuilt. City halls, courthouses, and libraries can be rebuilt and repaired.

I was very disappointed that President Bush did not offer his support and that the GOP faction had to be overcome. Senator Cochran, Governor Barbour, Senator Lott, and Congressman Taylor all had to work hard to convince the rest of Congress that these funds were needed.

There has been a lot of discussion at some sites that Mississippi should not look to Congress for help to rebuild. Again, I ask the question, "Why not?" Are we not American citizens? Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama suffered a natural disaster. One that will probably not be seen again for a 100 years or more. And before I start hearing the howls about the casino industry, they and several other so-called 'sin' businesses were excluded from the $8 billion tax break package approved yesterday.

One more thing I would like to add, all the wonderful volunteers who have been pouring into Mississippi are appreciated so very much, as are the generous donations. The SunHerald had a wonderful editorial the other day called The Invisible Coast. It was written as a response to how the media has for the most part forgotten us in Mississippi and Alabama. It is worth reading the whole thing but I wanted to share this excerpt because it expresses my sentiments also:

On the third day after Katrina crushed us, this newspaper appealed to America: "Help us now," the headline implored. America answered with an outpouring of love and help. That response saved us then.

Our plea to newspapers and television and radio and Web sites across the land is no less important today: Please, tell our story. Hear the voice of our people and tell it far and wide.

We are here. Do not forsake us.

We are no footnote.

And one more thing...

Thank you. To every out-of-state volunteer, to every friend and family member who has sent supplies or prayers, we sincerely thank you.

And we ask that you do one more thing: Call your senators and your congressional representative and ask them to support additional aid for South Mississippi's recovery.

We couldn't have gotten off our knees without you. But we can't get back on our feet without federal help.


The editorial was printed a couple of days ago but read the whole thing. The last sentence says it all, we need the federal help to get back on our feet.

2 Comments:

Blogger Esther said...

The money is a start. I hope it's not a one-time allocation.

10:42 AM  
Anonymous seawitch said...

esther,

I don't if it's a one time thing or not. I read in the paper the other day it's going to take a 128 billion. I couldn't find the article online so I didn't quote that figure. Must of it is going to be coming from insurance companies, eventually. That's a whole other story.

1:28 PM  

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