Securing $10 Million to Begin Louisiana Coastal Restoration Projects
METAIRIE, LA. - Congressman Steve Scalise (R-La.) and Congressman Cedric Richmond (D-La.) today applauded Chairman Simpson and the Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy & Water Development for including funds to the Louisiana Coastal Area Beneficial Use of Dredged Material (LCA BUDMAT) program in their Energy & Water Appropriations legislation for FY16. Reps. Scalise and Richmond have continually fought together for legislation to ensure Louisiana’s coastline is preserved.
“This $10 million in funding is an enormous victory for Louisiana’s coastal restoration efforts, and brings us one step closer to restoring our wetlands,” Rep. Scalise said. "Securing funding for LCA is a bipartisan issue that Congressman Richmond and I have proudly championed on several occasions on the House floor. The inclusion of these funds in this appropriations bill moves the ball forward for vital coastal restoration projects while also keeping the spotlight on the national importance of Louisiana's coastline.
“LCA BUDMAT is vital in restoring our bayous and wetlands, enhancing our hurricane and flood protection systems, and strengthening the habitats of species unique to our state. With the inclusion of funds for LCA, I am also calling on our state leaders in Baton Rouge to make this a top priority for Louisiana. We must do whatever is necessary to take aggressive action to reverse years of coastal erosion before it is too late. I look forward to working on this legislation with Congressman Richmond and our colleagues so we can bring this bill to the floor and secure passage of this critical funding next week.”
“Louisiana is losing coastal wetlands at an alarming rate,” Rep. Richmond said. “Time is of the essence with regard to restoring our coast and making Louisiana whole again. Beneficial use of dredged material is an essential tool in this ongoing effort. Providing $10 million in funding for LCA BUDMAT ensures that Louisiana will be able to move forward with critical restoration projects that will protect our citizens from hurricanes and flooding.
“Since coming to Congress I have remained a passionate advocate for the restoration of our coastal wetlands. In addition to providing essential storm surge protection and serving as natural habitats for Louisiana’s wildlife, these wetlands are critical to protecting more than 80% of the nation’s offshore oil and gas production and the busiest port system in the world. Restoration of Louisiana’s coastline is indeed a national priority. I am extremely proud that my colleagues in the House have again shown their support in the fight to restore Louisiana’s wetlands. Rep. Scalise and I will continue to make the case that the wetlands are essential to preserving our country’s energy security and economic vitality.”
In 2011, 2012 and 2013, the House passed legislation with bipartisan support to ensure funding for LCA. On each occasion, Reps. Scalise and Richmond introduced the amendments. The roll call votes for each amendment are as follows:
- H.AMDT.667 to H.R. 2354. Agreed to by recorded vote: 271 – 148 (Roll no. 590) on 7/15/11
- H.AMDT. 1170 to H.R. 5325. Agreed to by recorded vote: 216 – 177 (Roll no. 306) on 6/1/12
- H.AMDT. 295 to H.R. 2609. Agreed to by voice vote on 7/10/13