BATON ROUGE – U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) today addressed a joint meeting of the Baton Rouge branch of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Louisiana Engineering Society, and the Central Gulf Coast Chapter of the American Shore and Beach Preservation Association.
He discussed the need to support his Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which would provide critical resources to strengthen Louisiana’s infrastructure. The funding would improve roads, bolster resiliency, strengthen the electrical grid, expand rural broadband and support Louisiana’s energy industry with billions for hydrogen development and carbon capture technology. The legislation passed overwhelmingly in the Senate, 69-30, with broad bipartisan support.
“Someone whose home was ruined by Ida or is stuck in traffic needs this bill,” said Dr. Cassidy. “This legislation funds bridges, roads, flood protection, coastal restoration and hundreds of thousands of jobs. This is a tremendous opportunity for our state.”
Additionally, Cassidy discussed the RISEE Act, his legislation that would dedicate a new stream of funding from future offshore wind development for coastal protection and resiliency. Finally, he outlined the SCALE Act, his legislation that would develop carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) infrastructure, and provide a major boost to Louisiana’s economy. Both of these bills are working their way through Congress.
“The American Society of Civil Engineers – Baton Rouge Branch, along with the Louisiana Engineering Society and the American Shore and Beach Preservation Association was proud to welcome U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D., to speak to our membership at our Joint October Luncheon on Tuesday, October 12, 2021,” said Tyler Branch, P.E., M.ASCE, President of the ASCE Baton Rouge Branch.
Branch added, “founded in 1852, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) represents more than 150,000 civil engineers worldwide and is America’s oldest national engineering society. ASCE works to raise awareness of the need to maintain and modernize the nation’s infrastructure using sustainable and resilient practices, advocates for increasing and optimizing investment in infrastructure, and improve engineering knowledge and competency. ASCE stands at the forefront of a profession that plans, designs, constructs, and operates society’s economic and social engine – the built environment – while protecting and restoring the natural environment. More information can be found online at ASCE.org. We appreciated learning from Senator Cassidy at our event, where he provided an update on the work being done in the 117th Congress.”
Earlier that day, Cassidy addressed a luncheon organized by State Representative Mike Johnson to discuss the Windfall Elimination Provision and Government Pension Offset, which reduces Social Security benefits for retired state employees. Cassidy has introduced the bipartisan Social Security Fairness Act, which would eliminate those provisions.
“The people who lose Social Security benefits due to WEP and GPO are firefighters, police officers, teachers and other public servants,” said Dr. Cassidy. “They’re owed a fair shake by Social Security. My bill will help them get that.”
Invited to the luncheon with Senator Cassidy and State Representative Johnson were representatives from LASERS, the Louisiana Retired Teachers Association, the Louisiana State Police Retirement System, and other relevant bodies.
“The purpose of today’s meeting was to bring together the leaders of the various organizations in our state that are responsible for handling retirement issues for our public servants,” said Representative Johnson. “My goal is to join forces with these folks, the Legislature, our Governor, and Members of Congress to pass bipartisan legislation that will remove the unfair provisions of WEP and GPO from Social Security. These provisions cheat our retirees, their widows, and families of the earned Social Security benefits they are denied. This problem can be solved not based on partisan politics but clear principles of fairness and just doing right.”