Getting LA Back on Track | 5.7.2020 Update
As Louisianans continue to persevere through these tough times, I’m working to get our state’s economy, along with our nation’s economy, back on track. I’ve continued to advocate for the SMART fund, to support especially hard hit cities and towns as they begin discussions about reopening their economies.
Here in Louisiana, a large portion of our economy depends on revenue from small businesses and tourism, two areas devastated by this crisis. Many of the towns and cities in our state and across the country that depend on tax revenue from especially hard hit industries are seeing large budget shortfalls. If these local governments become unable to employ essential service workers, like law enforcement officers, firefighters or sanitation workers, small businesses and other employers will not be able to return.
That is why I Introduced the SMART Fund to assist areas hit hardest by this crisis. We need to preserve the foundation for our economic recovery. If we don’t, the hundreds of billions of dollars spent on small business relief will be wasted. The SMART Fund preserves the ability to afford essential services and makes full economic recovery possible.
Of course, there must be guardrails on how local governments use any federal aid funding. States cannot use it to bailout mismanaged pension funds, or other unfunded liabilities. This money is for maintaining essential services and preserving economic recovery.
While I’m fighting to provide critical recovery support for our state, Louisianans continue to step up for one another during this time as well. A professor at LSU Shreveport has begun creating 3D printed nasal swabs, in an effort to ensure facilities have the necessary testing supplies across the state. And just last week, residents of St. Martin Parish received free masks to help protect residents and their families in the coming weeks.
Finally, we can never forget our health care workers who continue to fight on the front lines of this pandemic. We cannot thank these workers enough for all they have done and continue to do to protect our communities and families during this time.
As always, please be sure to do your part to stop the spread and protect yourself and your family from infection. Contact the Louisiana COVID-19 hotline if you have any questions or need more information:
- Hotline: 1-855-523-2652
- Dial: 211
- Text “LACOVID” to: 898-211
We can and we will get through this pandemic together.
Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D.