Press releases

Watch Kennedy’s full remarks here.

WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Banking Committee, today raised concerns regarding the Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans’ inefficiency and failure to protect Louisianians’ homes and businesses from flood damage.

Key excerpts from the senator’s remarks are below.

“When New Orleans gets two inches of rain in a short period of time, it floods. Why? Because New Orleans is below sea level, and it’s in a bowl.”

. . .

“That’s why our founders in the city built first in the French Quarter—because it’s the highest area. We have what’s called the Sewerage and Water Board, which has pumps, when it rains a lot, to pump the water out. We’ve had that for years and years and years and years. The taxpayers pay for it. 

“And for years and years and years and years, it has been a model of inefficiency. In fact, it has been a cesspool of political patronage and corruption.” 

. . .

“Look at the headlines from our TV stations: ‘Payroll fraud in a secret sex room: troubling allegations at New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board,’ ‘Former New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board Employee Sentenced for Theft Scheme,’ ‘New Orleans Sewerage Water Department Raided by FBI,’ ‘Ex-Sewerage and Water Board Official Has to Pay Back $100,000 He Stole,’ . . . ‘We knew the Sewerage and Water Board was dysfunctional—Now We Know It's Corrupt.’” 

“The people of New Orleans deserve better, and what we need to do is one of two things. The politicians have had their shot: They missed. We need to either turn the Sewerage and Water Board over to the state of Louisiana and let some somebody else run it, or we need to privatize it because the Sewerage and Water Board’s plan right now—when it floods, when half of the pumps are broken—you know what their plan is? I kid you not: ‘Move to higher ground.’ Where?”

View Kennedy’s full remarks here.