This is the primary a part of a Fox News Digital Originals sequence in regards to the ongoing wrestle for residents to get well from the destruction brought on by Hurricane Ida in southern Louisiana.

Ever since Hurricane Ida ripped his small Louisiana city aside, David Camardelle has known as FEMA “federal emergency missing in action.”

The storm made landfall Aug. 29 with winds as much as 150 mph close to Port Fourchon, about 10 miles southwest of Grand Isle and Camardelle’s dwelling. A month later, dozens of residents whose houses had been destroyed reside in communal shelters and lack the sources they should start rebuilding.

Grand Isle, the state’s final inhabited barrier island, is dwelling to about 1,000 full-time residents. It’s additionally a part of Jefferson Parish, which incorporates the Greater New Orleans space.  

“It just takes a while,” mentioned Camardelle, shouting over the sounds of a generator nonetheless wanted to ship energy to Grand Isle City Hall.


David Camardelle (D), Mayor of Grand Isle (left), speaks to local leaders in his office damaged by Hurricane Ida.

David Camardelle (D), Mayor of Grand Isle (left), speaks to native leaders in his workplace broken by Hurricane Ida.

“Joe Biden and all the administration, they’re trying their best, but in the meantime, somebody’s paperwork is sitting on a desk,” Camardelle, the city’s Democratic mayor, informed Fox News. “You don’t need 20 people, 25 people between a FEMA trailer to give you the keys.”

The Federal Emergency Management Agency simply introduced “temporary solutions” to supply housing choices in areas hardest hit by the storm, together with RVs. The Sept. 30 announcement got here one week after Fox News met with native leaders in Jefferson Parish and the identical day Fox News reached out to the company for remark.

“To help address the shortage of sheltering and housing options in Southeast Louisiana, the state is establishing some temporary solutions, including a non-congregate sheltering program using recreational vehicles (RVs), such as travel trailers,” the FEMA press launch acknowledged. “Non-congregate shelters are locations where an individual or family can live safely with some level of privacy.”

“This program will focus on the most heavily impacted parishes, providing some immediate sheltering assistance until FEMA’s Direct Housing program is fully underway,” the assertion continued.

FEMA additionally acknowledged {that a} name middle will open early subsequent week for residents within the state-run sheltering choice. No timetable has been supplied for when the RVs will arrive.

As of Friday morning, Jefferson Parish leaders mentioned that they had not acquired any of the long-term trailers requested instantly after the storm, regardless of dozens of residents nonetheless dwelling in shelters.

FEMA doesn’t anticipate the primary long-term trailers to be delivered till mid to late November. However, the company informed Fox News it’s paying for resort stays for 1,661 Jefferson Parish households. FEMA additionally mentioned it is offering rental help to assist individuals relocate.

“These are people, especially if you didn’t have insurance, you’re going to want to rebuild your house, you want to be on your property,” Cynthia Lee Sheng, the Jefferson Parish president, informed Fox News. “You can’t be in a hotel in another area of the state or another state altogether.”

“And this is what people need to do is start reclaiming their lives by rebuilding their homes, and they need to be on their property to do that,” Lee Sheng continued.

Lower Jefferson Parish is dwelling to roughly 10,000 individuals, lots of them industrial fishermen and native enterprise homeowners.  

“I’m not bad mouthing nobody,” Camardelle, who’s been mayor since 1997, informed Fox News. “But somebody’s not telling the boss the right information.”

“They’re just sitting there … they’re takin’ a bath, they’re eatin’ good in another state, and they have no clue,” Camardelle continued.

Just south of New Orleans, in Jean Lafitte, residents are nonetheless digging out their houses.

“Twenty-five percent of our constituents became homeless overnight,” Jean Lafitte Mayor Tim Kerner Jr. informed Fox News. “Fifty percent can’t live in their homes for a long time–over 50%.”

“This community was devastated … it’s heartbreaking,” he continued. “Right now, it’s getting a roof over their heads and also trying to work on when they can feed their families.”

Driving by means of city, trash, particles, boats and even a coffin will be seen on the facet of the highway. The situations solely deteriorate as you drive south. 

A coffin displaced after Hurricane Ida sits on the road outside Jean Lafitte, Louisiana.

A coffin displaced after Hurricane Ida sits on the highway outdoors Jean Lafitte, Louisiana.

“I’ve been back here 25 years, it’s the worst it’s ever been,” mentioned one industrial fisherman in line to fill up on provides from a neighborhood charity. “I haven’t seen no help at all yet, applied for FEMA, I haven’t seen anything yet. But I’m feeling it’s coming.”

FEMA studies that since Hurricane Ida struck, practically 500,000 people and households have been authorised for greater than $660 million in help. However, Jefferson Parish residents say coping with FEMA is a wrestle.

“Every time I ever dealt with FEMA was a pain,” a neighborhood restaurant proprietor named David informed Fox News. “I mean, I never did get right.”

“You know, you wait, you wait, there’s nothing but red tape, and you never really get nothing accomplished,” he continued. “At least that’s my experience.”

Jefferson Parish Councilman At-Large Ricky Templet informed Fox News: “The federal government will spend millions and billions of dollars to save a green frog’s habitat. Same thing, they’ll spend billions and millions of dollars to save a spotted owl habitat.”

“It’s time we start looking at how we save our habitat and put our money where our mouth is,” he continued. “Either way, you know, these communities are part of America, a part of the state of Louisiana, or they’re not.”

Julie Erny, who owns a house on Grand Isle, mentioned she has only one message for President Biden and FEMA: “Just don’t forget about us, cause we are still suffering.”

FEMA mentioned any survivors needing rapid housing, can textual content LAShelter to 898211 or dial 2-1-1 to find a shelter.

Rebekah Castor contributed to this report.