BELLE CHASSE, La. – An upset Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser walked out of a Coast Guard meeting on sand berms calling it a “Dog and Pony Show.”
Nungesser said much of the meeting was spent talking about how well floating boom was working in collecting oil, a fact scoffed at by Nungessor who says much of the boom is, infact, not working at all in blocking the oil from coating area marshes.
"I just walked out just now cause a lady was talking about how well boom is working," Nungesser said. "She's obviously not from south Louisiana, and obviously not been in the Marsh holding dead pelicans. She has no clue what she's talking about."
Nungesser said President Obama promised him a decision by Wednesday on whether to approve the full, 100-mile sand berm barrier plan and that part of his promise included Tuesday's meeting with area leaders and the U.S. Coast Guard. Nungessor, however, says the gathering was nothing at all like what the president led him to believe.
"I thought it was a round table discussion as [President Obama] said, to kick around differences and see if we can come to a conclusion. This is not what this is. This is a dog and pony show."
Nungesser also complained that the Coast Guard had only approved two miles of the berms and that hasn’t even started because BP hasn’t provided the funding.
"I'm sick to my stomach sitting in there," Nungesser said. "I mean look at my face, my blood pressure, I had to leave the room. This panel is not a panel to decide whether we should dredge or not. We ought to have some of the dead animals in there, some of the people who went to the hospital sick trying to defend our coastline. Instead we have a bunch of bureaucrats from Washington assigned to tear this apart. If they don't go forward and make BP pay for this, God help them all."