Emergency Procedures for Conducting State Business for
The Ernest N. Morial Convention Center

WHEREAS, pursuant to the Louisiana Homeland Security and Emergency Assistance and Disaster Act, R.S. 29:721, et seq., a state of emergency was declared through Proclamation No. 48 KBB 2005, as amended by Proclamation No. 54 KBB 2005;

WHEREAS , Hurricane Katrina has caused unprecedented and extensive damage in the state of Louisiana and this tragic event has significant consequences on the financial conditions of the state;

WHEREAS , the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center is an integral part of the economic vitality and recovery of the state, fostering tourism, generating revenue for the hotel and restaurant industry, and garnering recognition nationally and globally as a premier destination for conventions and shows;

WHEREAS , any delay in the restoration of the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center to a full service convention center may force continued cancellation of conventions and shows, severely decreasing tourism and ultimately affecting the overall economic recovery of the state;

WHEREAS , the Louisiana Homeland Security and Emergency Assistance and Disaster Act, R.S. 29:721, et seq., confers upon the governor of the state of Louisiana emergency powers to deal with emergencies and disasters, including those caused by fire, flood, earthquake or other natural or man-made causes, to ensure that preparations of this state will be adequate to deal with such emergencies or disasters, and to preserve the lives and property of the citizens of the state of Louisiana; and

WHEREAS , the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center requested that time-lines be abbreviated to expedite procurement of certain items to make this facility ready to host all Mardi Gras functions and other major commercial tourism events which will bring in very significant tax revenues and signal the opening of New Orleans;

NOW THEREFORE , KATHLEEN BABINEAUX BLANCO , Governor of the state of Louisiana, by virtue of the authority vested by the Constitution and laws of the state of Louisiana, do hereby order and direct as follows:

SECTION 1: That such statutes which might prevent the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center (hereafter "Center"), as a political subdivision of the state of Louisiana, from being authorized and empowered to contract for necessary goods and services regarding the specifications, purchase and/or installation of carpeting, and any material related thereto to address the damage to the Center as a result from Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, are hereby suspended. The Center shall maintain documentation which shall include the vendor's names and addresses, goods or services purchased, prices paid, invoices and other emergency related reasons for those purchases. Strict compliance with R.S. 38:2181, et seq ., and R.S. 39:1551, et seq., shall not be required. Notwithstanding any provisions of this section, procedures set forth in R.S. 38:2212(D) shall be complied with. Notice of the declaration of this emergency as set forth in this Order shall be published in the official journal of the Ernest M. Morial Convention Center.

SECTION 2: The inspector general is directed and authorized to monitor those transactions conducted outside the scope of regulatory statutes, orders, rules and regulations to insure that those transactions are directly related to the emergency situation and are prudently handled and if any inappropriate transactions are noted, those situations shall be reported directly to the governor.

SECTION 3: This Order is effective upon signature and shall continue in effect until amended, modified, terminated, or rescinded by the governor, or terminated by operation of law prior to that date.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have set my hand officially and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of Louisiana, at the Capitol, in the city of Baton Rouge, on this 19th day of October, 2005.

Kathleen Babineaux Blanco

Al Ater
Secretary of State