...with houses and private businesses hit hardest. First to be rebuilt will be schools and medical facilities.

World Bank leaders say they want to ensure that the reconstruction effort will emphasize having the construction work done by local residents.

Corps: Louisiana Coastal Plan Advances

Lt. Gen. Carl Strock, the Army’s chief of engineers, approved a report on Jan. 31 outlining a $1.9-billion, multi-year plan that aims to halt massive wetlands losses along Louisiana’s coast. Congress appropriated $8.5 million in 2005 for initial work, but the overall program still needs authorization on Capitol Hill. The first batch of projects would total $1.1 billion, with the federal government funding $740 million and Louisiana the rest.

Compiled by Tom Ichniowski and Sherie Winston