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Economic Development

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The Jeff Davis Parish Economic Development Commission (JDPEDC) is a partnership of the cities, towns and tourist commission. Our team manages all contacts with potential industrial and business clients. JDPEDC also assists existing businesses with expansion and workforce development and housing; serves as an interface between a potential client and state and local government for available incentives and required permits; directs tourism through a management contract; and works with local, parish, state and federal governmental bodies.

The Agri-Industrial Park at Lacassine and adjoining land is the premier industrial site in Southwest Louisiana. The park, located at I-10 and Hwy 101, has two mile-long rail spurs served by both BNSF and UP railroads and is located approximately 20 miles from the Port of Lake Charles. The South Louisiana Rail Facility located in the park provides another marketing opportunity for our farmers to load rice and beans on rail cars and ship them directly to Mexico. The Zagis Cotton Spinning plant is located adjacent to the park and spins cotton from three states and ships the yarn to different locations. Louisiana Spirits, home of the “Bayou Rum” distillery is located to the North of the park and produces rum from sugar cane, distributes it state-wide and provides another opportunity for visitors to stop in our parish and buy Jeff Davis Parish products. Louisiana Spirits is both an economic development and tourism project.

Industry

The Center for Advancement of Meat Production and Processing (CAMPP) located to the North of the park is a 7,350-square-foot facility and a satellite campus under the administration of the Harold and Pearl Dripps Agricultural Sciences Department at McNeese State University. The center will be used to conduct applied research related to agricultural sciences and to support workforce development by preparing students for a wide variety of jobs in the agricultural and food science. McNeese State University will utilize this campus to “brand” their meat products.

LEEVAC Shipyards, located on the Mermentau River at the East end of the parish is a world-class ship building facility and has two other locations in Louisiana. They design and build offshore vessels for the petroleum industry and provide approximately 500 jobs in Jeff Davis Parish. BP Biofuels, also located on the Mermentau River, is the nation’s first cellulosic ethanol research and development facility. BP provides 100 jobs and has a $90 million partnership with British Petroleum.

Jeff Davis Parish is home to many small businesses, providing many quality jobs to our citizens.

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JDPEDC works on many different fronts to create a dynamic atmosphere for business development and maintains an inventory of available sites for business and industrial development. Working with new clients to determine workforce needs and skills and then working with local education officials to develop training regimens to meet those needs is one more aspect of economic development. Marketing and advertising of our assets is an ongoing job.

JDPEDC also manages the Jeff Davis Tourist Commission, coordinating all tourist activities – including providing state-certified Tourist Information attendants at the information center at the LA Oil & Gas Park. The parish is promoted in magazines and tour guides throughout the nation, and employees regularly participate in major tourism shows.

The Tourist Commission is involved with several major initiatives in the parish, including the development of crawfish farm tours and other ecotourism ideas. The newest byway in the state is located in Jeff Davis Parish, the Flyway Byway begins at Hwy 99 in Welsh, with stops at the Lacassine Pool and the Lacassine Refuge, then heads to Lake Arthur and then heads up to Jennings. The byway provides an opportunity for visitors to exit I-10 and get up close and personal with the flora and fauna of our great parish.

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