Three former Republican governors of Louisiana are urging President Bush to take a "second look" at Rep. Richard Baker's plan for rebuilding New Orleans and other areas of the state that lay in ruins."The bottom line is this: it is difficult to understand how Louisiana rebuilds if the landscape is littered with the remains of over 200,000 unusable homes and business properties," the former governors say in a letter to President Bush. "Something has to be done about them, or else the alternative is that they lie like ruins, tied up in a legal mess impenetrable to the private market, for years and years to come." Former Govs. Mike Foster, Buddy Roemer, and David Treen stress that the Louisiana Recovery Corp. proposed by Rep. Baker, R-La., could "make a difference for all the folks financially tied up in these properties." Bush administration officials informed Rep. Baker on Jan. 23 that they oppose his bill (H.R. 4100) to create a government corporation to oversee and finance the cleanup and rebuilding of New Orleans and other hard-hit areas of the state. "[W]e feel a special need to give you a sense of the real disappointment in the state following your administration's announcement not to support Richard Baker's Louisiana Recovery Corporation bill," the governors told the president.

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