I'm not quite sure why my house was not chosen for funding. I thought that perhaps it was because I am not an owner-occupant, and priority is given to owner-occupants. But my mother's house was not chosen either and she meets that criteria. So, I guess the next step is to appeal... if only to find out why. Knowing my beloved New Orleans, all the grant money was probably given out to friends of the funding panel. And this is what they told everybody else (as per my letter, so nicely written):
"We certainly applaud the commitment you have shown to rebuild historic Louisiana and only wish we had better news for you concerning the outcome of this particular grants program. I have to say that we received a great many worthy projects but, unfortunately, funding was very limited. We hope that the confidence you have shown in bringing Louisiana back will continue in the future. I know that this department will be seeking additional monies from Congress so you may well have another opportunity to have your project funded in a future round of grants."