While the allocations to those five pots may be clear enough, much of language describing how and where the money is spent is not, Davis said. At an informational gathering last week of Louisiana groups and government representatives who lobbied successfully for passage of the RESTORE Act, Davis and Garret Graves, head of the state’s Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority, agreed the language left holes “big enough to drive trucks through,” Davis said.With regard to potential "hijacking" don't rule out the Governor's office there either.
“For example, there is language about funding going to projects in counties or parishes that border the Gulf or have a coastline,” Davis said. “Well, look at New Orleans. It is on an arm of the Gulf — Lake Pontchartrain. Is that a Gulf shoreline? Or does it even border the Gulf?”
And though Louisiana sees Pot-2 money as clearly marked for ecosystem restoration, some of it could be used for other purposes, namely economic projects, Davis warned.
Efforts to divert money from ecosystem repair may also come from within the state, Davis said. Interest groups are likely to push for grants for pet projects and factions in the state Legislature may attempt to “hijack” funding to help solve Louisiana’s budget deficit, he said.
Saturday, March 23, 2013
More football condos and seafood commercials
The details of the RESTORE Act disbursements are making it appear less and less restorative every day.