EXECUTIVE ORDER MJF 98-46

EXECUTIVE ORDER MJF 98-46

Louisiana Highway 1 Project Task Force


WHEREAS, Louisiana Highway 1 (hereafter "LA 1"), a 2-lane highway with sections which are impassible during inclement weather, is vital to the economic vitality and safety of the citizens of Louisiana who live near and/or work in the region of LA 1 between Port Fourchon/Grand Isle and Alexandria (hereafter "the region");

WHEREAS, the citizens of Louisiana who live and/or work in the region, especially those in the vicinity of Grand Isle, Port Fourchon, and Raceland, are dependent on LA 1 remaining open and passable for safe and expeditious evacuations during the threat of a hurricane and/or a tropical storm;

WHEREAS, the economic infrastructure of the region is dependent upon the integrity of LA 1 as ninety-five percent (95 percent) of the shellfish and finfish harvested in the region's waters are shipped to market over LA 1; sugar cane harvests that annually generate approximately two hundred-twenty million dollars ($220,000,000) and vegetable harvests that annually generate approximately four million dollars ($4,000,000) in sale revenues are transported to market and/or processing facilities over LA 1; and the vast majority of the goods and services needed to support and sustain the region's oil and gas industry, an industry that generates annual state mineral revenues in the range of half a billion dollars ($500,000,000), are transported over LA 11;

WHEREAS, the state of Louisiana's goals for the twenty-first century include developing a transportation infrastructure in the region that will safely and adequately support an increase in traffic volume resulting from emergency situations and/or economic growth and development; and

WHEREAS, the interests of the citizens of the state of Louisiana would be best served by the creation of a task force charged with the duty of

1) analyzing the feasibility of upgrading, from a 2-lane to a 4-lane highway or an interstate, the section of LA 1 between Port Fourchon/Grand Isle and Alexandria; and

2) evaluating the impact that such an upgrade would have on the citizens of the state of Louisiana, especially those citizens who live and/or work in region;

NOW THEREFORE I, M.J. "MIKE" FOSTER, JR., Governor of the state of Louisiana, by virtue of the authority vested by the Constitution and laws of the state of Louisiana, do hereby order and direct as follows:

SECTION 1: The Louisiana Highway 1 Project Task Force (hereafter "Task Force") is established within the executive department, Office of the Governor.

SECTION 2: The duties of the Task Force shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

A. Evaluating the feasibility of upgrading, from a 2-lane highway to a 4-lane highway or an interstate, the section of Louisiana Highway 1 (including Louisiana Highway 3090) that is located between Port Fourchon/Grand Isle and Alexandria (hereafter "LA 1 Project");

B. Analyzing the need for and means to provide adequate funding for the LA 1 Project, including the availability of state and/or federal funding sources and innovative financing alternatives; and

C. Evaluating and documenting the level of citizen support for the LA 1 Project by:

1) the citizens of the state of Louisiana, in the region of LA 1 between Grand Isle/Port Fouchon and Alexandria (hereafter "the region") and statewide;

2) the municipalities, communities and parishes in the region and statewide; and

3) the members of the Louisiana Legislature from the region and statewide.

SECTION 3: The Task Force shall submit a comprehensive written report to the governor; the House Committee on Transportation, Highways and Public Works; and the Senate Committee on Transportation, Highways and Pubic Works, by April 1, 1999.

SECTION 4: The Task Force shall be composed of a maximum of twenty-one (21) members appointed by, and serving at the pleasure of, the governor. The membership of the Task Force shall be selected as follows:

A. the governor, or the governor's designee;

B. the secretary of the Department of Transportation and Development, or the secretary's designee;

C. the commissioner of administration, or the commissioner's designee;

D. the chair of the House Transportation, Highways, and Public Works Committee, or the chair's designee;

E. the chair of the Senate Transportation, Highways, and Public Works Committee, or the chair's designee;

F. the Federal Highway Administrator for the state of Louisiana, or the Federal Highway Administrator's designee;

G. citizens of the state of Louisiana who reside in a community in the region of LA 1 between Grand Isle/Port Fourchon and Alexandria;

H. representatives of businesses and/or industries that are located in the region of LA 1 between Grand Isle/Port Fourchon and Alexandria; and

I. one (1) at-large member.

SECTION 5: The governor shall appoint the chair from the membership of the Task Force. All other officers shall be elected by the membership of the Task Force.

SECTION 6: Support staff for the Task Force and facilities for its meetings shall be provided by the Department of Transportation and Development.

SECTION 7: Task Force members shall not receive additional compensation or a per diem from the Office of the Governor, or the Department of Transportation and Development. Nonetheless, contingent upon the availability of funds, a member who is not an elected official or an employee of the state or federal government, may receive reimbursement from the Office of the Governor for actual travel expenses incurred, in accordance with state guidelines and procedures, and upon the written approval of the commissioner of administration.

SECTION 8: All departments, commissions, boards, agencies, and officers of the state, or any political subdivision thereof, are authorized and directed to cooperate with the Task Force in implementing the provisions of this Order.

SECTION 9: This Order is effective upon signature and shall continue in effect until amended, modified, terminated or rescinded by the governor, or terminated by operation of law.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have set my hand officially and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of Louisiana, at the Capitol, in the city of Baton Rouge, on this 8th day of October, 1998.

1 Factual data was provided by the Department of Economic Development in combination with the Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program. M. J. "Mike" Foster, Jr.
Governor

ATTEST BY
THE GOVERNOR
Fox McKeithen
Secretary of State