St. John The Baptist Parish News Release

President Obama Signs Water Bill into Law

President Obama Signs Water Bill into Law

Bill includes the West Shore Lake Pontchartrain Levee Project for St. John Parish

Monday, December 19, 2016

St. John the Baptist Parish –   A statement released from the White House confirmed that President Barack Obama has officially signed the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation (WIIN) Act into law.  The WIIN Act, previously known as the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) includes the Westshore Lake Pontchartrain Hurricane Risk Reduction Project (levee) for the parishes of St. John the Baptist, St. Charles and St. James.

To reduce the risk of flooding associated with storm surge in St. John Parish, the West Shore Lake Pontchartrain project comprises of earthen levees, floodwalls and pump stations, around Montz, LaPlace, Reserve and Garyville. This project was stalled for more than forty years but following Hurricane Isaac, local leadership and state and federal officials brought the project back to the forefront. Since 2012, Robottom and other local leaders, have spent countless hours advocating to move this project forward.

“Today is an exciting day for the residents of St. John Parish and our neighboring parishes,” said Robottom. “Hurricane Isaac exposed the vulnerabilities of the River Parishes and the need for levee protection. West Shore is the parishes’ number one priority and we will not stop until this project is constructed.”  

With a total cost of more than $700 million, St. John Parish is responsible for a cost-share of approximately $50 million with an estimated $5 million in annual operations and maintenance costs. Besides West Shore flood protection, the Act authorizes 16 other large projects for the state.

Updates will continue to be released from the Communications Department as they become available. Follow the Department at on Facebook at St. John Parish and Twitter @SJBPGOV.