SHREVEPORT – Today in Shreveport, U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) spoke to a roundtable of business leaders at the Greater Shreveport Chamber of Commerce, where he discussed benefits from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) in the Shreveport-Bossier Region. They also discussed energy development, crime, Barksdale Air Force Base and the sewage system in Shreveport.
“Thanks to the infrastructure bill, we are already cleaning up brownfields, supporting airports, and planning a passenger rail line to connect Shreveport to Dallas and Atlanta,” said Dr. Cassidy. “And there’s still money available for business and civic leaders to make Northwest Louisiana a more attractive place for private industry to create long-term sustainable jobs.”
In April, the Shreveport Regional Airport was awarded $900,000 by the Federal Aviation Administration to acquire an aircraft rescue and fire fighting vehicle. A separate $55,000 was awarded to the downtown airport to improve its taxiway. Additionally in May, $1 million was awarded to clean up the Biomedical Research Foundation (BRF) Bell Street property in Shreveport.
Cassidy was also able to secure $128 million in July via the Fiscal Year 2024 National Defense Authorization Act for Barksdale Air Force Base, and another $7 million in a separate appropriation for a new medical facility. Also in July, $500,000 was set aside to study deepening the J. Bennett Johnston Waterway.
Cassidy was welcomed to the chamber by Dr. Tim Magner, President of the Greater Shreveport Chamber.
“We were delighted to be able to host Senator Cassidy at the Chamber today, and to be able to share with him the challenges we face and the opportunities we see in Shreveport-Bossier,” said Dr. Magner. “We are grateful for his availability, his willingness to engage with us and for the important work he is doing in Washington, DC to help bring additional federal resources to Northwest Louisiana.
Earlier, Cassidy met with American Legion leaders throughout Northwest Louisiana at the headquarters of American Legion Post 14 (Lowe-McFarlane.) They discussed several issues important to veterans, including the continued roll-out of the PACT Act, which provides assistance to veterans who were exposed to poisonous toxins during their service. Cassidy supported the bill.
“Our veterans sacrificed so we can live in freedom and security,” said Dr. Cassidy. “If they have medical needs, they need to be addressed, and in a timely fashion. My office will follow up to make sure the VA is meeting this obligation.”
Additionally last year, Cassidy passed and had signed into law the Solid Start Act, which requires the VA to contact every veteran three times within their first year of separation from the military to connect them with programs and benefits, including mental health resources. Since then, he has introduced legislation to help families and caseworkerssecure the records of prisoners of war and those missing in action and to prevent the implantation of the Oracle Cerner electronic health record system until improvements are made.
Cassidy was introduced to the group by Mr. Corey Moore, Commander of the Lowe-McFarlane post.
“We’re thankful for Senator Cassidy being here today so we can discuss issues that are important to veterans including implementing the PACT Act and serving homeless veterans. We appreciate his attention to these issues in Washington at home,” said Mr. Moore.