[StBernard] Update from Bobby
westley at da-parish.com
Mon Feb 27 23:52:18 EST 2006
It has been a jam-packed beginning to 2006 here in Congress, particularly
related to Louisiana, and I wanted to take a moment to update you on some of
the events that have transpired this past month.
Bringing Louisiana a fair share of energy royalties:
On February 15, I introduced the Domestic Energy Production through Offshore
Exploration and Equitable Treatment of State Holdings Act of 2006 (H.R.
4761) in the House of Representatives. Long name, but a simple concept -
bringing Louisiana a fair share of the money we generate for the federal
government from energy exploration off our shores. Currently, states with
onshore drilling like New Mexico receive 50 percent of the royalties
generated within that state. The coast generates between $5 and $7 billion
dollars in oil revenue per year and accounts for nearly 30 percent of the
nation's energy production, yet we get next to nothing back. Louisiana
This bill will bring $600 million to Louisiana immediately, $1 billion a
year starting in 2011, and eventually more than $2 billion a year. It also
takes a comprehensive approach to energy exploration, working to address
rising natural gas prices and to encourage greater domestic energy
production. Even though I just introduced it, it has already begun to
garner national support in the House.
A good article about the bill from WWLTV.com can be found at
<http://www.jindal.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=39674> . A
similar story from The Advocate can be found at
Working to put roofs over their heads:
For months you have probably heard me talking about the need to help
homeowners rebuild and move home. We got a boost in that direction when we
were able to get Congress to pass $6.21 billion in funds that can be used
for housing. I am also happy to share with you that last week we took
another step forward when the President asked for $4.2 billion in additional
funding for Louisiana. This funding is designed to be used to rebuild
housing in the areas ravaged by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The request is
now before Congress, and I assure you I will work hard to get this money
approved and into the hands of Louisianians as quickly as possible.
The President's new housing request is part of a larger $19.8 billion
request for relief funding. The request includes the housing funding, as
well as funding to strengthen our levees and hurricane protection, and to
try to assist the Small Business Administration in helping Louisiana
businesses. These are commendable priorities and I will continue to fight
for them in the coming weeks.
Keeping the check in the mail:
This past week the House passed a bill to increase the borrowing authority
of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). For the third time the NFIP
is in danger of running out of money, which would keep Louisianians from
receiving the insurance checks they deserve. Louisiana residents have paid
their premiums on time, and it is only fair they get their insurance
payments on time. Every day's delay is another day a family cannot start
rebuilding. The bill the House passed, which is a sister bill to legislation
I introduced in January, will make sure those checks keep flowing.
Adding to the family:
On a more personal note, I am thrilled to announce that my wife is pregnant
with our third child and is due this summer. We are already blessed with
two wonderful children and look forward to this joyful addition to our
As always, please feel free to contact my offices, at (202) 225-3015
(Washington, D.C.), (504) 837-1259 (Southshore), or (985) 893-9064
(Northshore), to share your views and concerns.
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