Without naming nameless names, I think it’s probably time to clarify some of the absurdity currently being perpetuated by less than a handful of local bloggers.
Let’s get a few things straight:
1. The attorney for our local levee board cannot control and does not dictate FEMA’s or the Army Corps of Engineers’s national standards for levee accreditation or certification.
2. I know it may sound nuanced and “esoteric,” but accreditation and certification mean different things. Attacking someone for understanding the distinction only exposes your own ignorance.
3. The City of Alexandria does not own or control our levees.
4. In order to assist the Red River, Atchafalya, and Bayou Bouef Levee Board, the City entered into agreement in which it would use its own engineering resources to provide for the required federal reporting on levee structures within the City limits. (Apparently, this was treated as a two-year-old breaking news item today.) Believe it or not, engineering services are different than legal services. Crazy, huh?
5. Typically, the owner of the levees is responsible for providing for these reports. In an earnest effort to share taxpayer resources and eliminate duplicative spending, the City Engineer provided an honest and thorough report.
6. Based on the City’s own reporting, alleged deficiencies were identified. If this is some grand conspiracy, then where’s the cover-up?
7. These alleged deficiencies are not the result of negligence on behalf of the City; the allegations are a product of an independent assessment of structures owned and maintained by another governmental agency.
8. Instead of blaming others and pointing fingers, the only way we can resolve this outstanding issue is by working together, in a spirit of shared cooperation and respect. (You say you love Alexandria; prove it.)