March 4, 2008 Congrats to NLCOG on starting Feasibility Study for I-49 Inner-City Connector (3 1/2 vitally important miles)... Appreciation for Kent Rogers and his staff, along with Mayor Cedric Glover. Click on this link...which leads to another link on NLCOG site (7 Page Report). Again, Hooray for Northwest Louisiana...and in reality the whole State.
June 24, 2007 HOORAY! Democracy won out today in the Louisiana Legislature as Supplemental Bill HB 765 was sent from the Louisiana Senate Finance Committee to the Senate and passed. HB 765 probably, funds another major portion of I-49 from Belcher to I-220, once federal funds, approx. $240 million, are matched to this $60 million provided by the State. HB 765 also provides Environmental Impact Study-Money for the I-49 Inner-City Connector in Shreveport from I-220 to I-20. While not officially yet in writing, as far as we can tell, this "Study-Money" should be budgeted approx. $3.5 million over three years.
Congratulations to BILLY MONTGOMERY, State Representative, who for the last 18 months has kept the topic of I-49 North on the front burner, more than any other legislator. Also kudos go to State Senators, LYDIA JACKSON and SHERRI CHEEK, who worked dliligently on the Senate Finance Committee and steered HB 765 to the finish line.
Special praise also goes to ROY BURRELL, State Representative, whose relentless efforts in making sure the I-49 Inner-City Connector gets its due consideration and potential funding, will pay huge dividends for the Ark-La-Tex citizens in the near future.
Shreveport Mayor, CEDRIC GLOVER, is also to be highly commended for his involvement and lobbying the Governor and the entire Louisiana Legislature on the I-49 North issue. Plus, the many additional Legislators who provided much needed support from both North and South Louisiana.
I49 Report Analysis: At the present time (June 24, 2007), funding mechanisms for I-49 North seem to be in place. Things can change in a moment's notice in Politics as you know, so it is imperative the general public stay involved with this issue. Check back here often to I49report.com to stay abreast of any new developments.
Again, congratulations to all the North Louisiana Legislators for a job well done, so far. There is still a long road to travel and much more work to come in the next few years, if not the next few days. Again, things can change. The general public will be satisfied, only after, I-49 ties directly to I-20 at I-49 (near Murphy Street).
- Louisiana House Bill "HB 321" provides flexible funding enabling the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development to undertake the project of inner-city I-49 between I-20 and I-220 with matching Federal highway funds.
- The Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for this project can be funded entirely with State funds provided by HB 321 without using Federal matching highway funds, if no Federal funds are available provisionally by HB 321.
- By designating the Inner City I-49 as part of the National Highway System which Federal highway law has already established, passage of HB 321 corrects the oversight of the Northwest Louisiana Council of Governments and the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development.
- By recognizing the Inner City I-49 as a part of the National Highway System, Inner City I-49 will be eligible for matching Federal highway funds. Federal highway funds have already been authorized by previous Federal appropriation acts for the Inner City I-49.
- HB 321 will mandate the Inner City I-49 portion is recognized and designated as a segment of "I-49 North;" will provide a reliable annual revenue source for the completion of the Environmental Impact Statement, and the eventual completion as a six-lane Interstate highway bringing economic development and improvements to all the citizens of Shreveport - Bossier (Ark-La-Tex). Allendale, the area of the City where this vital 3 1/2 mile segment calls home, will be revitalized and be the catalyst for major business growth in the Ark-La-Tex region.
- Another Legislative Bill may be effective in funding I-49 North....however, two mandatory points must be included: 1) $3.5 million over three years to fund the Environmental Impact Statement for the Inner-City Connector; 2) The only route to be considered from I-220 will be the Inner-City Route to connect to I-20 (at Murphy Street). For the long-term growth of Shreveport-Bossier (Ark-La-Tex) these points are not negotiable and should be legislated immediately.
Do It For Your Kids and Grand-Kids...And Their Kids And Grand-Kids!
Key Facts I-49 "Inner City Connector"
3 1/2 miles from I-220 to I-49 @ I-20 (Murphy Street)
It will Unlock the Vast Potential of Shreveport-Bossier (Ark-La-Tex Region)
A Short, but Vital Road to Growth and More Prosperity for North Louisiana Citizens