President Obama plans to visit Gulf Coast

WASHINGTON (KPLC) - President Barack Obama says he will pay a mid-October visit to Gulf Coast areas damaged by Hurricane Katrina.

Obama also signed an executive order Tuesday that extends for six months the federal office in charge of coordinating recovery and rebuilding efforts in the region. That office was initially established in November 2005. Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast on Aug. 29, 2005, killing more than 1,600 people in Louisiana and Mississippi.

The area is still cleaning up, rebuilding and recovering from more than $40 billion in property damage caused by the hurricane. Hurricane Rita hit a month later near the Texas-Louisiana border, causing billions more in damage.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)