Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards provided an update on Subtropical Storm Alberto. This afternoon, Gov. Edwards hosted a conference call with New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell, the National Weather Service, the Louisiana National Guard, the Louisiana State Police, the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP), as well as the New Orleans Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness.

According to information from the National Weather Service, upon making landfall, Southeast Louisiana can expect a strong tropical storm with winds in excess of 60 miles per hour.

“There are a lot of questions that remain unanswered regarding Alberto, but the best thing we can do is prepare for every option,” said Gov. Edwards. “Today, members of the state’s Unified Command Group and I, along with New Orleans officials, received a full briefing on this storm system from the National Weather Service. The state stands ready to support the City of New Orleans and South East Louisiana in any way that we can should severe weather strike. It is critically important for everyone to monitor their local news and heed the warning of officials in their area.  Regardless of the direction this system takes, there promises to be heavy rains across Southeast Louisiana. Now is the time to make preparations, and the best place to find tips for that is www.getagameplan.org. My administration will provide additional information, in coordination with city officials, as it becomes available.”

A Photo from today are available by clicking here. Photo credit: Office of the Governor

GOHSEP began hosing daily conference calls with the Southeast Hurricane Task Force today and will continue to do so through the duration of this event.

The weekend is also the Louisiana Tax Discount Weekend for Hurricane Supplies. Here is information from the Louisiana Department of Revenue:

Louisiana residents can buy flashlights, batteries, portable generators and other hurricane supplies with a discount on the state sales tax Saturday, May 26 and Sunday, May 27. During these two days, eligible purchases are subject to only three percent state sales tax instead of the full five percent.

The Louisiana Hurricane Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday takes place on the last consecutive Saturday and Sunday each May, before the June 1 start of the Atlantic hurricane season. It applies to the first $1,500 of the purchase price of each of the following items:

 

  • Any portable self-powered light source, including candles, flashlights and other articles of property designed to provide light;
  • Any portable self-powered radio, two-way radio, or weather band radio;
  • Any tarpaulin or other flexible waterproof sheeting;
  • Any ground anchor system or tie-down kit;
  • Any gas or diesel fuel tank;
  • Any package of AAA-cell, AA-cell, C-cell, D-cell, 6 volt, or 9-volt batteries, excluding automobile and boat batteries;
  • Any cell phone battery and any cell phone charger;
  • Any nonelectric food storage cooler;
  • Any portable generator used to provide light or communications or preserve food in the event of a power outage;
  • Any storm shutter device;
  • Any carbon monoxide detector; and
  • Any reusable freezer pack such as "blue ice."

The exemption applies to the state sales tax only. The full amount of any local sales tax is in effect unless the local taxing authority creates its own exemption.

The state sales tax exemption does not apply to items sold by vendors located at any airport, public lodging establishment or hotel, entertainment complex or convenience store.

Check the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development’s www.511la.org before you travel if your region is impacted by the storms.

Find more tips on weather and preparedness on GOHSEP’s Facebook and Twitter accounts. Listen to conversations on all aspects of emergency management by downloading GOHSEP’s The Get A Game Plan Podcast. You can receive emergency alerts on most smartphones and tablets by downloading the new Alert FM App. It is free for basic service. The Get A Game Plan App is another resource available to help you and your family prepare for any type of emergency. You can download the Louisiana Emergency Preparedness Guide and find other information at www.getagameplan.org.