Town Hall meetings address Chinese drywall matter

State senators held court Wednesday while hosting Chinese drywall town hall meetings aimed at addressing concerns of members of the community regarding the toxic import. Dedicated to providing information to those with the faulty wallboard, or those who think they might have it, the town hall meetings were hugely popular, requiring the originally scheduled solo meeting to be turned into two. WVUE of New Orleans reports that the crowds were packed with individuals looking for answers at a time where nothing on this Chinese drywall matter seems certain.

They report

State Senators A.G. Crowe (R-Slidell) and Julie Quinn (R-Metairie) ended up hosting two town hall meetings due to larger, unexpected crowds.

People showed up armed with questions and ready for answers. “All the time we’re living in these places we are not getting well, and it’s not good for our health so we need something now. We need direction. We need funding,” said Barbara Manuel, a resident of Violet in St. Bernard Parish.

Sen. Quinn told the crowd, “I was really floored to learn the federal government does not test any product that comes into our country except for food and drugs. Everything else is buyer beware.” Quinn told the crowd she even talked to one victim of tainted Chinese drywall who said he “considered suicide for life insurance because he doesn’t know what else to do to provide for his family.”

Such despair is obviously proof that a remedy is necessary, and soon. On progress, there appears to be some developments aimed at helping those hindered by the problematic drywall

Sen. Crowe informed people about a couple of action plans through the Louisiana Recovery Authority. The LA legislature, at the end of the 2009 legislative session, approved a bill that sought a minimum of $5 million through the LRA to provide assistance to people impacted by the toxic drywall. Crowe said the LRA is looking to provide an additional $20 million, and he said that would cover those who were Road Home applicants and those who lost their homes in Katrina, but did not qualify for Road Home money.

Hopefully with the success of these meetings, progress will be made in helping those families who are afflicted get a resolution that is satisfactory for all involved.

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