LONG OVERDUE: Local Bloggers in the Media
Yes, that would include me. And yes, I should have posted this a LONG time ago. I'll spare you all the excuses.
Maybe some of you NOLA bloggers remember the guys from an ABC news affiliate in Santa Barbara, CA who came and filmed the goings-on during Rising Tide 2007. It aired in the week after the two-year anniversary of The Storm and reporter Kevin Davis was kind enough to post the segments that aired on KEYT along with some of the raw footage.
I was recruited for this report on the Rising Tide volunteer day when we were painting A.P. Tureaud School. My segment appears in Part 1. Bloggers Ray Shea and Ana Maria appear in Part 2. Ana Maria also featured these videos in a Daily Kos Diary post.
So, here you go:
Part 2: (My favorite moment is Ray's reaction to the mention of FEMA.)
KEYT anchor interviews Kevin regarding his experiences in New Orleans: (I wish he would have included my piece about how everyone is being screwed by contractors, especially since a caller brought it up.)
Here's Part 1 of the raw footage filmed at my house. I was horrified to see what appears to be the ass of a 45 year old woman on what actually appears to be me. Oh, the burden of vanity! (And yes, I am 45, but that's beside the point.) I think I've lost a few of those post-Katrina pounds since August, but maybe I've really just gotten used to them.
Here's Part 2 of the raw footage. In this part I tell the rest of the story (that I never got around to posting) of what happened with my insurance claim as it relates to the racking of my house.
As my claim with State Farm goes, the damage exceeds my policy limits (which I thought were adequate since State Farm adjusts them upward every year), and I still haven't been paid everything I'm due on contents and I've been paid nothing for Additional Living Expenses (ALE), despite the fact that we haven't been able to live in the house since the storm. My attorney is still on the case to collect this as well as the accumulated depreciation that's being withheld. I'm still tens of thousands of dollars short of what I'll need when it's all said and done and who knows what kind of help, if any, the Road Home will be. I've only had the initial meeting so far.
Here's some unsolicited advice to all you homeowners out there, and I'm not just talking about you folks in New Orleans. Check your insurance policy's limits. Make sure you have enough coverage to rebuild your home based on today's costs, and get a policy with provisions for a situation where widespread destruction could cause construction prices to become inflated. (Or you may be surprised to find yourself underinsured.) Consider the fact you may need a lawyer to fight for what you're due, but that may cost you from 25%-40% of whatever is recovered and that's money you'll need to rebuild. (All of this may be next to impossible for the middle-class citizen of New Orleans, where the cost of adequate homeowners and flood insurance plus the new property tax assessments may more than double your monthly mortgage payment.)
Please check out the other interview footage posted on Kevin Davis's YouTube page. There's some interesting stuff over there. (And thanks again, Kevin, for telling our stories.)