By Maj. Jerry Bell, Emergency Manager
There is some good news to report in reference to Hurricane Laura. I received a text from Senator Mike Reese who stated that he had been notified that President Trump had approved a 100 percent pay for all our debris removal. This approval just saved DeQuincy and many other small cities in Louisiana hundreds of thousands of dollars that they would have to match for their part in debris removal. Debris removal costs millions of dollars so it would have cost DeQuincy a lot of money.
Some other good news was that FEMA extended the period to register for Hurricane Laura until Nov. 27, for those who did not register for help. Our team that is working with FEMA continues to upload all our damages into the FEMA portal for possible re-imbursements. Mayor Riley Smith and Chief Casey Whitehead continue to push for housing for our displaced. This is very important and this subject is brought up at all FEMA meetings. There are thousands of people without homes in Louisiana.
Our FEMA people on the ground will be at the Police Department until Saturday, Nov. 7. So if you have some FEMA questions, make a visit and ask them what you need to know. They should be able to point you in the right direction.
The debris removal trucks are working daily to pick up all our debris as soon as possible. Please push all your debris to the curb if you can. We have several more days to get that debris to the curb. Our mayor will keep the trucks here as long as there is debris to be picked up. Continue separating your construction debris from your wood debris. If you see your neighbor has their debris mixed, ask them to separate it so that the trucks will pick it up. Help your neighbor if you can. Samaritan’s Purse is still on the ground. They have a truck parked at Market Basket if you want to sign up with them for projects. It is a wonderful organization and they have helped numerous families with their clean-up.
DeQuincy Police are out of the emergency mode however they are still patrolling heavily at night to protect our citizen’s properties and thus far the amount of theft has been very minimal. This is evidenced by the Police Beat that shows only a few traffic arrests. There seems to be less crime now than before the hurricanes and that is good. Our citizens don’t need the extra problems of people stealing their property. Continue checking on your property if you don’t live there or have your neighbors check on it for you.
Lastly, be careful in signing contracts and or paying in advance for your roofing or other contractual work. There are several contracting companies on the ground. Get them to give you references on jobs that they have already done in DeQuincy. Most will be honest but there probably are some that aren’t. Just be careful with your money.
Be safe and wise.