Biden to visit New Orleans as Ida federal response continues

The administration says the government will increase financial assistance for families impacted by Hurricane Ida.
Published: Sep. 1, 2021 at 3:31 PM CDT
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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - FEMA officials said they know a long road is ahead of them as they try to prioritize where help is needed the most.

A bird’s eye view of the demolition caused by Hurricane Ida in Grand Isle, La. shows roofs torn off of buildings and homes shredded to pieces. The president of Jefferson Parish, where Grand Isle is located, said the island is “uninhabitable.”

In Washington, President Joe Biden is preparing to visit New Orleans on Friday while work continues in the hardest hit areas.

”The continuing focus on the ground is on power restoration as nearly a million customers in Louisiana, more than 40% of the state remain without power in the middle of a heat advisory,” said White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki during Wednesday’s briefing.

Responding to the storm’s aftermath is coming with its own safety threat. As an added precaution, the U.S Department of Transportation is activating a routing assistance hotline for first responders to safely navigate through storm damage areas.

“The federal government is sharing aerial and satellite imagery to support damage assessments, help them with debris removal and traffic controls, so restoration workers and equipment can get access to downed wires and poles, and expediting permitting for re-running of transmission cable across the Mississippi River, and for standing up transmission towers,” said Psaki.

The Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans to Louisiana business owners and residents. The agency has set up a Virtual Business Recovery Center to provide assistance as well as a Disaster Loan Outreach Center to help renters and homeowners.

White House officials said 31,000 households affected by Ida have already received $500 payments.

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