Nearly two thirds of the city’s population has returned. But many of the city services they depend upon haven’t. Less than half of the city’s schools are open. 10 of the 23 original New Orleans hospitals remain closed. The city’s police headquarters and two of its precinct stations still operate from temporary trailers, struggling to contain a crime level that has remained at a high water mark. For a realistic look at what it’s like now, check out places like YouTube where a few students, church groups and animal rescuers have videotaped parts of the gulf coast and neighborhoods like this—the lower ninth ward-one of the hardest hit in New Orleans. That school bus you see lying on the ground and that car in the tree and these swamped homes look as they did in the summer of 2005 earlier this summer, representatives from Louisiana and Mississipi went to Washington to complain about the slow pace of recovery, much of it due, they said, to red tape with FEMA, the federal emergency management agency. Meanwhile, the Associated Ppress reports tax breaks intended for reconstruction of homes destroyed by Katrina are being used to build luxury condos hundreds of miles inland from where Katrina hit…Conveniently located near the University of Alabama football stadium.

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