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Story Archives: Hwy. 84, Vidalia port topics for D.C. trip
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|Hwy. 84, Vidalia port topics for D.C. trip|
A Concordia Parish delegation led by Vidalia Mayor Hyram Copeland and Ferriday Mayor Glen McGlothin will meet with Congressional leaders in Washington Tuesday to discuss the El Camino Highway and the Vidalia port.
Others attending will Concordia Economic Development Director Heather Malone and Chairman Richard Young, El Camino Corridor Commission board members H.L. Irvin and Jenny Blanton, Vidalia City Manager Ken Walker and former state representative Bryant Hammett.
The City of Vidalia, Town of Ferriday and Concordia Economic Development are funding the trip, while Hammett is paying his own way.
"This is something we do every year and it is imperative for us to acquire grants," Copeland said. "With new stimulus packages and commitments from our state and federal delegations we feel like we can get some commitments for funding these projects. We've had a lot of success acquiring grants in the past and look to continue to do so."
The El Camino Corridor Commission has been working since 1990 to complete a four-lane traffic corridor along Hwy. 84 across five states from east Georgia to west Texas, passing through north-central Louisiana.
"Right now Louisiana has the least amount of four-laning of any state," Copeland said. "We are the weak link."
Copeland said a four-lane corridor through the state would help bring in more industries, as would a port.
"We feel like this is the year to get major commitments from our delegation," Copeland said. "Hopefully we can get this $12-to-15 million project going and that would be tremendous for industrial recruitment because we do not have a rail system. We have over 2,000 acres committed to industrial development, we just need a means to receive and ship goods."
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