BATON ROUGE, La. — Louisiana Economic Development Secretary Don Pierson will lead a two-day tour through flood-impacted communities in Acadiana and the Capital Region to support the business community and to spread the word about business recovery resources. Pierson will be joined by elected leaders, economic development officials and representatives of federal and state agencies who are joining together to assist businesses and individuals throughout the region.
Events will be held Wednesday in Lafayette, Crowley, Abbeville, New Iberia and Youngsville. On Thursday, the tour will continue in Walker, Baton Rouge and Prairieville.
“Following the widespread flooding through South Louisiana earlier this month, our priority is to put the right resources into the hands of affected businesses so they can get up and running again, as soon as possible,” Pierson said. “I am looking forward to meeting with business owners and our regional and local stakeholders in both Acadiana and the Capital Region, so we can calibrate our efforts to help our business community with the greatest efficiency.”
LED is providing a complete resource guide for flood assistance at OpportunityLouisiana.com
The Acadiana tour Wednesday will begin with a series of events at that region’s Business Recovery Center, which has been established at the LITE Center in Lafayette. Representatives of One Acadiana, the Lafayette Economic Development Authority, the U.S. Small Business Administration, the Louisiana Small Business Development Center Network and LED will meet at 9 a.m. with state and local elected officials to discuss collaborative efforts to inform area businesses about recovery resources. Those state and local stakeholders will conduct a roundtable discussion with a handful of small business owners about recovery efforts to date and areas that need greater attention. At 10:15 a.m., Pierson will lead a news conference to share recovery assistance information with the media and answer questions from reporters.
Officials from LED and One Acadiana will attend a briefing at the National Incident Management Systems & Advanced Technologies Institute on the campus of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, then will travel to Crowley, Abbeville, New Iberia and Youngsville to view local flood damage and meet with affected business owners.
The Capital Region tour Thursday will feature similar events at the Business Recovery Centers set up in Walker, Baton Rouge and Prairieville. LED, SBA, Small Business Development Center, and state and local elected officials will be joined by representatives of the Baton Rouge Area Chamber in Baton Rouge, by officials from the Livingston Economic Development Council and Livingston Parish Chamber of Commerce in Walker, and by Ascension Economic Development Corp. and Ascension Chamber of Commerce officials in Prairieville.
A complete itinerary for the two-day tour is as follows. All meetings are open to press, with the exception of stakeholder meetings.
Acadiana Region, Wednesday, Aug. 24
- 9 a.m. – Meeting with stakeholders and small business owners, Lafayette Business Recover Center, LITE Center, 537 Cajundome Blvd., #209
- 10:15 a.m. – News conference, Lafayette Business Recovery Center
- 10:45 a.m. – Louisiana Business Emergency Operations Center briefing, NIMSAT Institute, 635 Cajundome Blvd
- Noon – Small business walk-through, Crowley
- 1:30 p.m. – Small business walk-through, Abbeville
- 3:05 p.m. – Small business walk-through, New Iberia
- 4:30 p.m. – Small business walk-through, Youngsville
Capital Region, Thursday, Aug. 25
- 9 a.m. – Meeting with stakeholders, Walker Business Recovery Center, SLU/Livingston Parish Literacy & Technology Center, 9261 Florida Blvd.
- 9:30 a.m. – News conference, Walker Business Recovery Center
- 10 a.m. – Discussion with small business owners, Walker Business Recovery Center
- Noon – Meeting with stakeholders, Baton Rouge Business Recovery Center at Louisiana State Archives, 3851 Essen Lane (near Interstate 12)
- 12:30 p.m. – News conference, Baton Rouge Business Recovery Center
- 1 p.m. – Discussion with small business owners, Baton Rouge Business Recovery Center
- 2 p.m. – Meeting with stakeholders, Prairieville Business Recovery Center at BancorpSouth Bank, 13423 Louisiana 73
- 2:30 p.m. – News conference, Prairieville Business Recovery Center
- 3 p.m. – Discussion with small business owners, Prairieville Business Recovery Center