Due to a city ordinance banning single-wide mobile homes in the town of Cordova, Alabama, Mayor Jack Scott is refusing to allow FEMA to provide temporary housing to any of the town's residents who's homes were destroyed by the tornados that recently barreled through the southeastern U.S.
An EF-3 twister with winds of at least 140 mph slammed into the town around 5:30 a.m.on April 27th, knocking out power and damaging numerous buildings. An EF-4 with winds around 170 mph struck about 12 hours later, killing four people and cutting a path of destruction a half-mile wide through town. Scores of homes, businesses and city buildings were destroyed or damaged by the time the winds died down.
Despite the fact that the Cordova Police Department, a pharmacy, a bank, and City Hall have all moved into similar trailers since the storm, the mayor will not lift the ban for any of Cordova's 2000 residents.
Towns with similar laws have granted temporary waivers, but even in the face of public outrage Mayor Scott isn't apologizing. He says he doesn't want run-down mobile homes parked all over town years from now. "I don't feel guilty," he said. "I can look anyone in the eye."
Please help me put pressure on Mayor Jack Scott to lift this ridiculous ban so that the people of Cordova can move out of tents errected on their demolished lots and into the temporary housing provided by FEMA.
In a town whose population has been declining since the Indan Head textile mill closed in the middle of the century, you cannot afford to drive off more of your residents. If they are not allowed to live in FEMA's temporary housing instead of tents, they will simply leave, and rather than re-buliding they will leave behind ruble and vacant lots. If you do not help them, that will be your legacy.
As you know, other towns with similar ordinances have lifted their bans in order to help their residents. I urge you to do the same.
I hope that public pressure will help persuade you to temporarilly lift the city's ban on single-wide mobile homes in order to allow FEMA to provide temporary housing for Cordova's tornado victims. If the city government continues to deny its citizens access to emergency housing, we call on the state government to step in to redress the situation.