After having a virtual event in 2020, the 16th annual Chamber SWLA Legis-Gator Luncheon was held Dec. 15 at L’Auberge Casino Resort. The congressional calendar was clear when we set the new date, but true to form we had to pivot because the U.S. House and U.S. Senate were still in session. We had a video message from Sens. John Kennedy and Bill Cassidy. Congressman Garret Graves from Louisiana’s sixth Congressional district took an early flight from D.C. to Houston and drove to Lake Charles just in time for the luncheon. We really appreciate his effort.
Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser told of plans to continue to promote Louisiana and he presented the powerful video “You are My Sunshine” as performed by Lauren Daigle. Gov. John Bel Edwards used his time to provide an update on hurricane recovery funding and for the programs that are in place. Awards were given to outstanding legislators including former Sen. Ronnie Johns receiving the coveted LegisGator of the Year Award for his long and outstanding service. Johns resigned from the state senate to become chairman of the Louisiana Gaming Authority. It was good to have an in-person event and hopefully if we all do our part, further COVID outbreaks will remain low and we can proceed to in-person meetings next year.
Next up is the annual Chamber SWLA annual banquet, Jan. 13 at Golden Nugget Casino Resort. The theme is “SWLA, Putting the Pieces Together.” We will have several dynamic speakers who will brief us on the federal funding outlook, infrastructure, long term planning, redistricting and other issues that will be of great impact to our region. Get your tickets now by visiting thewebsite.
The year ended also with another huge industrial announcement. Venture Global announced it would invest over $10 billion to develop another LNG facility in Cameron. The new facility, named CP2, will result in at least 200 direct new jobs with average salaries of $120,000 plus benefits. Louisiana Economic Development estimates the project will result in 867 indirect jobs. At the peak of construction an average of 2,300 construction jobs will be created.
Additionally, we are looking forward to a final investment decision in early 2022 for the Driftwood LNG Project at Carlyss. And there are more projects on the way.
Despite continuing to recover from natural disasters, our area is vibrant and holds much potential.
We thank the over 1,200 business members for their confidence in us to serve as The Voice For Business, making The Chamber SWLA one of the largest Chambers of Commerce in the state.
We hope you will take time during the holidays to pause and reflect on the true meaning of Christmas.
On behalf of our talented SWLA Alliance staff, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year here in Southwest Louisiana.