The Clarion-Ledger, 6/11/7

A new federal law will save Gulf Coast cities millions of dollars on Hurricane Katrina recovery projects and also might forgive loans that helped them stay afloat following the storm.

But millions of dollars the communities borrowed from the state of Mississippi still must be repaid or refinanced by October, officials said last week.

Under a law signed by President Bush, FEMA can cancel repayments of Community Disaster Loans three years after the disaster. Coastal leaders used the loans for payroll expenses so their cities could continue operating after homes and businesses were obliterated on Aug. 29, 2005.