The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is allocating $2.4 million on top of congressional spending this year for dredging the Red River. The J. Bennett Johnston Waterway Navigation Project received the additional funds for operation and maintenance. The head of the Red River Waterway Commission, Ken Guidry, says the funding is critical to keep industries based at the Port of Caddo-Bossier and the Alexandria Port.
The Red River Waterway Commission’s new research biologist is on the job. Allie Cozad's mission is to raise armies of giant salvinia eating weevils to release on infested areas of the Red River. She realizes it's an uphill battle.
“It takes a lot of weevil to do a lot of damage," Cozad said by phone, adding that the salvinia problem feels like job security as she starts her work as a commission employee.
The Red River Waterway Commission started construction this month on a second disc golf course at Fort Buhlow Recreation Area near Pineville in Rapides Parish. The first 18-hole course completed there a year ago has been well used. The commission’s operations director Mike Boydstun said enthusiasm for the sport surprised him. It’s drawn new people to the recreation area.
“You wouldn’t expect them to be out there in the heat of the day this time of year, but we have a lot of people who just come all day long," Boydstun said.