Blue roofs approved for nine more parishes hit by Ida, including East Baton Rouge | News

Homeowners in East Baton Rouge Parish and nine other parishes have been granted permission to get temporary roofs for free in the wake of Hurricane Ida, officials said Thursday.

The issue of blue roof eligibility has been a sore spot for most Louisiana congressional delegations, who earlier this week sent a letter to FEMA Administrator Deane Criswell requesting that the agency review the criteria used to decide which parishes are eligible.

Colonel Zachary Miller, commander of the US Army Corps of Engineers Hurricane Ida, said the expansion followed a request from the governor’s office in consultation with parish leaders and others.

Ten days after Hurricane Ida tore her roof, Candace Pepp was the first of 70,000 Louisiana households to receive temporary roofs on Wednesday.

Newly eligible parishes include East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Iberia, Iberville, Pointe Coupee, St. Martin, St. Mary, Washington, West Baton Rouge, and West Feliciana.

They join the 15 previously authorized parishes: Ascension, Assumption, Jefferson, Lafourche, Livingston, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. Helena, St. James, St. John the Baptist, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, and Terrebonne.

That means that all 25 parishes declared catastrophic by the storm will be eligible for the roofs.

Louisiana Congress leaders on Monday asked federal officials to review the criteria for which parishes will be given temporary roofs after East B…

The roofs are made of industrial plastic sheets designed to keep homes dry until permanent repairs are made.

The work is administered by the US Army Corps of Engineers for FEMA – Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The first such roof went up in New Orleans East on Wednesday.

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Roofers install what is expected to be the first of approximately 70,000 temporary roofs on a home in New Orleans East on Wednesday, September 8, 2021. FEMA and the US Army Corps of Engineers are overseeing the blue roof project to help homeowners recover from the damage caused by Hurricane Ida. (Photo by Chris Granger | The Times-Picayune | The New Orleans Advocate)




More than 48,000 applications for the coatings have been submitted, with up to 70,000 expected.

Miller said the plan is to raise 400 roofs a day in six days. “We’ll be working with these crews very soon across the state,” he said.

Miller said the goal is to fulfill all requests in about 60 days, weather permitting.

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Whether criteria have changed in how parishes are approved is unclear.

U.S. Representatives Garret Graves, R-Baton Rouge, Steve Scalise, R-Jefferson and three others called for new benchmarks in which parishes qualified.



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Roofers install what is expected to be the first of approximately 70,000 temporary roofs on a home in New Orleans East on Wednesday, September 8, 2021. FEMA and the US Army Corps of Engineers are overseeing the blue roof project to help homeowners recover from the damage caused by Hurricane Ida. (Photo by Chris Granger | The Times-Picayune | The New Orleans Advocate)




“This is good news for the victims of Hurricane Ida in several parishes,” Graves said in a statement. “We all know that allowing homes to absorb more water while waiting for repairs just means more damage, more mold, more costs and more delays.”

Homeowners and people in permanently occupied rental properties can register at: blueroof.us or by calling 1-888-766-3258.

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