Thousands of Louisianians Give Thanks

Letters of thanks to be delivered to leaders in Washington this week

BATON ROUGE, La. (December 12, 2007) – Thousands of Louisianians participated in the “Louisiana Gives Thanks” campaign, signing a letter to President Bush, members of Congress and the American people thanking them for making the state’s recovery from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita a national priority. The campaign, which was initiated by the Louisiana Recovery Authority (LRA) and supported by elected officials and more than 30 non-profit organizations, generated more than 8,400 signatures from citizens across Louisiana and the others throughout the nation. Letters will be delivered to the White House and Congressional offices this week.

“This holiday season, Louisianians want the rest of the country to know that we have so much for which to be thankful. The financial support committed to our recovery has gone a long way to rebuilding thousands of homes and affordable rental units; improving schools for the many children returning to the state to learn; restoring our wetlands; and strengthening our levees to protect us from future storms,” said LRA Chairman Norman Francis. “We are humbled by the blessings the nation has bestowed upon us and we want to thank the President and the Congress and their leadership for their commitment to Louisiana. This continuing support gives us hope for the future.”

Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco and Governor-elect Bobby Jindal kicked off the campaign last month traveling together to Capitol Hill to personally meet with leaders in Washington to express gratitude for the historic investments they had recently made in Louisiana’s recovery. The week before their visit, Congress put into law the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA), which authorized nearly $7 billion to restore critical hurricane and flood protection infrastructure in Louisiana. It also passed a Continuing Resolution attached to the Defense Appropriations Bill, which included $3 billion for Louisiana’s housing recovery program, known as the Road Home.

This $3 billion appropriation, which the President signed, fully funded the Road Home program. Governor Blanco and the LRA announced last week that the state will not have to seek new funds from Congress to ensure that every eligible homeowner receives their full grant award from the Road Home.

The “Louisiana Gives Thanks” campaign is privately funded through the Louisiana Recovery Authority Support Foundation. To read the Louisiana Gives Thanks letter that will be delivered this week and learn more about the campaign visit: Learn more at www.lra.louisiana.gov/LouisianaGivesThanks.

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