LA: 3 Years After Katrina

THis is from an article found in the NY Times.

The pace of recovery is slowing in New Orleans as the city approaches the third anniversary of Hurricane Katrina late this month. The next president and Congress will need to expedite assistance before the city’s mood turns from guarded optimism back to despair.

With a mélange of federal, state, city and private recovery efforts under way, it is difficult to grasp what is really happening in the stricken city. Fortunately, two reports on New Orleans’s condition have just been issued by authoritative outside organizations.

These perceptions are largely consistent with an index of progress compiled by the Brookings Institution and the Greater New Orleans Community Data Center. Their third-year report finds that the greater New Orleans area has recovered the vast majority of its pre-Katrina population and jobs but that recovery trends have slowed in the past year. Tens of thousands of blighted properties, a lack of affordable housing and thin public services continue to plague the city. Rents are 46 percent higher than before the storm.

New Orleans residents expressed mixed attitudes about their prospects. Three-fourths told Kaiser that they remained optimistic about the future even though most felt that both Washington and the American public have largely forgotten them. What is worrisome is that half of the residents are dissatisfied with or angry about the lack of progress, most think it is a bad time for children to grow up in New Orleans and 22 percent (predominantly young) are seriously considering moving away

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