Bossier Parish wins $25 million case against FEMA

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Butch Ford

During Wednesday’s Bossier Parish Police Jury meeting, it was announced that the Bossier Parish Police Jury won its approximately $25 million case against Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) for public assistance (PA) funding for the repair of forty-seven roads that were damaged by two consecutive years of flooding in 2015 and 2016.

“We put a good team together. We had good experts. And Bump [Skaggs] saw it all. I’m tickled to death. The good thing is the people in South Bossier that had that water flooding their roads for three or four weeks that destroyed them, were going to be able to fix them. This is good news for Bossier Parish and South Bossier Parish,” said Bossier Parish Engineer Butch Ford.

Following Ford’s remarks, Parish Attorney Patrick Jackson said,“This is just so good. We’re the first ones to win.”

According to the parish, Poole, Atkins Clark, Smith, Caplis Sligo and Sligo Roads need the most work, with an estimated $15 million price tag. Another 40 smaller roads need about $10 million in repairs.

The parish has been seeking the funds for more than three years. FEMA has continued to deny the request. After exhausting every appeal with FEMA, the Bossier Parish Police Jury voted in October of last year to request an arbitration hearing.

In January of this year, Ford and other parish officials flew to Washington D.C. and presented their case.

The United States Civilian Board of Contract Appeals determined that Bossier Parish proved that the declared disaster of 2016 caused damage to the roads at issue in the arbitration.