Gov. John Bel Edwards said Friday that rural Louisiana is in crisis and announced the establishment of a council to seek ways for revitalization.
Edwards, who was speaking at the Louisiana Police Jury Convention in Shreveport, says former chief of staff Ben Nevers will chair the new Governor’s Advisory Council on Rural Revitalization, The News Star reports.
“He’s the biggest champion I know of rural Louisiana,” Edwards says of Nevers, who is also a former state senator from Bogalusa.
“I know that rural Louisiana often feels left behind,” the governor says. “We have to make sure there are opportunities for success and prosperity everywhere. I chose this meeting to announce the council intentionally because I know it impacts so many of the places you represent.”
The council will identify the needs and issues facing Louisiana’s vital communities as well as solutions to removing any barriers that prohibit them from being more productive, healthy and attractive places to live and work.
“Rural communities across the country are in crisis, and we are no different here in Louisiana,” Edwards says. “They bear a disproportionate burden of poverty, lack adequate access to health care, education and other basic necessities. This council will help us identify their unique challenges and help implement effective and innovative Louisiana solutions.” Read the full story.