AS REPORTED BY USA TODAY September 19, 2005.
The residents of Nw Orleans begin to return offiically today, as the Mayor, Ray Nagin, and the Federal Task Force Chief, Vice Admiral Thad Allen, knock heads on the safety of the return. The mayor has decided that residents of Algiers, Uptown, and the French Quarter, can move back in the try to restart their lives and businesses. The admiral thinks the infrastructure is still too fragile to support such a move, and also worries aboutp potential levee breaks without a sound, coherent evacuation plan.
The two meet today to discuss their differences. "Our re-entry plan properly balances safety concerns and the needs of our citizens to begin rebuilding their lives. We must offer the pople of New Orleans every chance for a sense of closures and the opportunity for a new beginning," said the mayor.
On NBC's Today show, Allen said of the effort, "Our concern is when you have the general population returing in large numbers, without the proper infrastructure to support them. Everybody wants the city of New Oleans to be restarted. The mayor has a vision. We agree with that vision. The discussion we're having with the mayor is over the timing of re-entry and to do it safely."
Said one of the owners of a restaurant in the French Quarter, "We'll just take it one day at a time."