"We must ensure that the failures of the past are never repeated," President Obama said in a statement today, announcing the extension of the Office of the Federal Coordinator for Gulf Coast Rebuilding
and his decision to send two cabinet members to the region.
Homeland Security Secretrary Janet Napolitano and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan are heading to the Gulf Coast and New Orleans in early March to evaluate firsthand the progress that's been made and assess the region's needs.
"The residents of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast who are helping rebuild are heroes who believe in their communities and they are succeeding despite the fact that they have not always received the support they deserve from the Federal government," the President said. "This executive order is a first step of a sustained commitment by my Administration to rebuild now, stronger than ever."
Some important facts:
- This August will mark the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.
- Mardi Gras is this Tuesday, Feb. 24.
- New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin was among 85 mayors gathered this morning at the White House