Press releases

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced today that Louisiana will receive $41 million in Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) grants for the widening of Interstate 12 in St. Tammany Parish and for roadwork connected to Port Fourchon.  The Appropriations Committee funds the BUILD grants, and Sen. Kennedy has been working with Transporatation Secretary Elaine Chao to secure the funding through the appropriations committee.  Secretary Chao phoned Sen. Kennedy early this morning to announce the funding.

Sen. Kennedy wrote Secretary Chao in July 2018 about unsafe conditions and bottlenecks along a 3.8-mile segment of Interstate 12 in St. Tammany Parish.  Four people died in traffic accidents on the stretch of roadway over Memorial Day weekend this year.

The funding for Port Fourchon also is vital to reducing traffic accidents.  A new connector road and lift span bridge will be built to divert traffic from a rural road to a four-lane divided highway.

“The widening of Interstate 12 is critical to public safety.  After the Memorial Day weekend fatalities, I started working with state and local leaders to convince Secretary Chao that this funding was necessary to save lives.  I want to thank St. Tammany Parish President Pat Brister and state Sen. Jack Donahue for working tirelessly with me on this project,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “I’m also pleased that we received funding for infrastructure related to Port Fourchon, which plays a vital role in our oil and gas industry and energy economy. Port Commission Executive Director Chett Chiasson’s leadership and hard work on this BUILD grant will do enormous good in our efforts to continue growing our port.”