Final regional Transportation Task Force meeting held in Baton Rouge
Monday, October 17, 2016 at 10:31:01 AM
BATON ROUGE, La. -- Regional leaders and stakeholders met in Baton Rouge on Friday, for what would be the culmination of eight regional meetings held around Louisiana to discuss transportation investment solutions, and with the ultimate goal of reinvesting in Louisiana’s roads, bridges and ports and improving traffic in the Capital Region.

“There is a resounding chorus across this state that it’s time to make a substantial investment in transportation,” DOTD Secretary Shawn D. Wilson, Ph.D., said. “We’ve got some critical issues that need to be addressed, especially in the Capital Area, but we need funding to be able to do that. It’s time that we make a difference. It’s time that we make an impact. Knowing this, Governor Edwards created this task force, because investments in infrastructure benefit us all.”

This regional meeting of Governor John Bel Edwards’ Task Force on Transportation Infrastructure Investment was hosted by the Baton Rouge Area Chamber and the Capital Region Planning Commission and was held at the Baton Rouge Recreation and Park Commission’s (BREC) main complex.

“The Capital Region business community is united on this issue, and is strongly asking the task force to come up with a revenue recommendation that fully addresses our region’s challenges. The Baton Rouge area has experienced tremendous economic growth in the last several years, and is positioned well to maintain that growth, but only if we get serious about addressing our region’s traffic crisis and our woefully inadequate transportation infrastructure,” said Adam Knapp, president and CEO of BRAC.

“Many of us who live and work in East and West Baton Rouge parishes experience frustrations daily in our commutes. I am willing to explore all options as it relates to funding solutions, with assurances that the parishes I represent benefit from those solutions,” Rep. Edmond Jordan said.

"I was elected last year to work with others to help solve the tough problems facing our state. Transportation has certainly been a tough problem for the Capital Region, and it's time for action,” Rep. Paula Davis said. “I look forward to working with my colleagues in the legislature next session to enact smart, long-term solutions that help end our transportation gridlock.”

Rep. Barbara Carpenter stated, “As a member of the House Transportation Committee, I think it is imperative that we take a serious look at addressing the infrastructure needs throughout the Capital Region and the state. All options should be on the table to come up with a collaborative plan.”

The task force is co-chaired by Secretary Wilson and Maj. Gen. John Basilica, vice president and Gulf Coast district leader for HNTB Corporation.

In June 2016, Governor Edwards announced the formation of the task force. The group will work to find investment solutions to address transportation needs in Louisiana and will ultimately issue a recommendation to the Governor for legislative action by January 1, 2017. For more information, please visit the Task Force web page.

Regional task force meetings have been held in New Orleans, Shreveport, Lake Charles, Houma, Lafayette, Monroe and Alexandria.