Cassidy touts SW La. benefits of infrastructure bill

Published 11:11 am Friday, January 21, 2022

U.S. Sen.  Bill Cassidy, R-Louisiana, recently announced a $643,360,450 allocation for the state from the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The allocation will help build coastal resiliency, fund flood protection projects and more— particularly for certain long overdue projects, he said.

“Louisiana communities have waited years, sometimes decades, to see progress on Army Corps project,” Cassidy said. “This funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Package is crucial to protect our state against future hurricanes and floods. (I’m) Looking forward to the additional ways the bipartisan infrastructure bill will benefit our state.”

Southwest Louisiana is set to see $125,000,000 for Coastal Louisiana Hurricane Protection projects. Design-build contracts will be awarded to elevate structures in the current 25-year flood plain in Calcasieu, Cameron and Vermillion parishes.

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Private homes, business and public facilities on the flood plain can expect to benefit from the allocation, he said. Whether it is rebuilding levees, fortifying wetlands or elevating structures, Cassidy said, “Resiliency will come in many different shapes.”

While he favors elevating structures “because it can lower someone’s flood insurance premium” one singular approach will not solve the state’s coastal resiliency and hurricane protection woes. “It’s all dictated by the circumstances,” he said.

Projects were also allocated for the Morganza-to-the-Gulf Hurricane Protection System and for the Atchafalaya Basin in the recent announcement with more projects expected to be announced, he said. “There are additional ways the bipartisan infrastructure bill will benefit our state. There’s a lot more money to allocate.”

Cassidy also shared that the Army Corp of Engineers has allocated over $2 billion in Hurricane Ida Disaster Supplemental aid. “This disaster aid is critical for rebuilding after Ida and there’s more to do…There’s still other possibilities and other pots of money.”

In national news, Cassidy announced that Democrats don’t have the votes to pass their “partisan election take over on a national level” regarding the effort to challenge “common sense voter ID laws.”  “This effort isn’t about protecting the right to vote. It’s about Democrats wanting to federalize elections to their advantage. The President chooses to vilify red states like Georgia and Texas that have more accessible election laws than his home state of Delaware.”

Cassidy called the Democratic maneuvers a “political show” and evidence that the administration has “lost focus” of greater priorities within the country. “The administration is failing to address crippling inflation, COVID-19, school closures, the border crisis and record high opioid overdoses, so they are manufacturing a fake voting rights crisis to distract from their incompetence.”