A state of disaster has been declared for the city of Lubbock, and the Emergency Incident Management Team has been activated as Lubbock prepares to house up to 1,000 evacuees in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
There are currently 7 people staying at the Reese Technology Center Friday night and others are already staying at the Salvation Army and Red Cross, but Lubbock will be ready when more arrive. The first group of refugees could be in Lubbock as early as this Sunday.
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As mentioned, the city has agreed to take in 1,000 people. The Reese Center can house 90 people immediately at a dorm. Bathroom and shower facilities are already in place there. The city is making plans to also use an air conditioned 47,500 square foot hanger, as well as dining facilities and a gymnasium. The hangar can house 500 people. Other housing options include the Lubbock Municipal Coliseum, which can accommodate up to 500 people. Another 50 to 75 people can be housed at the National Guard Reserve Center.
Mayor Marc McDougal has authorized $500,000 from the general fund to cover shelter, food, medical care, and transportation for the evacuees. That money will be reimbursed by FEMA.
"Once they go through intake, once we get them through that process, we get their name, id badges, we get their criminal history, once we get that information we load them in busses and bring them out there to Reese. Once Reese is full, we'll go to the Coliseum and then out to the National Guard Reserve Center," said Mayor McDougal.
The state emergency operations director told the mayor that we could expect the first flight sometime Sunday afternoon. Citibus will then transport the evacuees to the Auditorium for processing.
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