State initiating buyout program for houses destroyed by 2016 flood
DENHAM SPRINGS - City officials just received $10 million from the state to buy out homeowners in the Spring Park area whose houses were devastated in the 2016 flood.
"It would be a good thing for property owners," said homeowner Robert Betancourt. "I'm hoping it's more than a bunch of talk."
Betancourt and his wife have lived in the area for eight years. Their home didn't flood but came close. However, several homes around the couple did take on water. They say the empty homes are eyesores and attract rats, insects, and other unwanted guests.
"It's a mess and it stinks," Carlea Betancourt said. "We've had squatters that are around. We've had to call police several times on them."
The buyout program offers property owners in the affected area 100% of the appraised value, including money for vacant lots. The homes will be removed and the property turned into open green spaces.
Livingston Parish was the hardest hit area in the state during the 2016 food, with 85% of the structures affected in some way by floodwaters.
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