WASHINGTON – The American Press highlighted a recent visit from U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) to Lake Charles where he hosted a Rural Community Funding Summit, toured the home of Ms. Lucille Hebert, which was damaged by Hurricane Laura, and toured the Port of Lake Charles.
“U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy paid Lake Charles a visit on Wednesday during his last leg of the Rural Community Funding Summit.
“Cassidy, the USDA Rural Development and the Louisiana Housing Corporation visited eight cities in Louisiana to connect community members with state and federal funding opportunities such as the Infrastructure Investment Jobs Act the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the Inflation Reduction Act.
“Cassidy said he believes events like the Rural Community Funding Summit are vital to connect local communities to funding sources.
“Cassidy was a lead author for the historic bipartisan Infrastructure Investment Jobs Act, which will funnel billions of dollars into Louisiana infrastructure — including roads and bridges, water infrastructure, broadband and resiliency.
“The current amount IIJA funds for Louisiana projects sits at $1,581,181,967.
“‘The bipartisan infrastructure bill is bringing billions of dollars to our country. It has the ability to transform our communities, but only if we use the money,’ Cassidy said. ‘If it is not accessed by people in the state and local level, it is like all this work never happened.’
“Local leadership is a vital component to increase connectivity between funding sources, local municipalities and citizens.
“‘It’s one thing to say that there’s $500 million coming over five years to Louisiana for small towns to redo their sewer and water systems, but it’s another thing for that mayor or that police juror to look in the eye of the person who’s going to give them that dollar, to get their phone number … that’s the missing ingredient. We are trying to make that connection.’”
“During his stop, Cassidy visited the home of 92-year-old Lucille Hebert, who recently benefited from one such effort — the Lake Charles Housing Rehabilitation Recovery Program.
“‘The idea being that everybody is elevated by this so it doesn’t become just a pack of housing only for one type of person, but becomes a housing in which that kind of community spirit makes everybody better.’
“The ultimate goal is to elevate Southwest Louisiana communities above where they were before storms. ‘I like to say that when we come back in 10 years, people will look at this as another inflection point of where Southwest Louisiana hit the bottom after the storms,’ he said.
“‘The recovery after Laura and Delta was a recovery, but the bipartisan infrastructure bill does more than get us back to baseline. It brings us further along.’”
Read the full article here.