Laredo officials visit DC in push for more federal resources

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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) -- More money for Laredo: That’s what city leaders are asking for from the federal government.

Mayor Pete Saenz is in Washington, D.C. today to ask lawmakers to keep Laredo’s interests in mind as they debate some big issues. Washington Correspondent Alana Austin met up with Saenz and Congressman Henry Cuellar.

Mayor Saenz and other Laredo city leaders wrapping up a series of meetings in Washington this week. Saenz says he's "very encouraged" by what he's hearing on the ground.

The delegation continues to push for federal money for local projects — like upgrading the Laredo International Airport and I-35 and I-69.

They also want to see a combined military and homeland security facility at the airport.

“That translates into jobs, economic development. It's just good stuff so to speak for the citizens of Laredo, so any of those projects can really catapult the economy to another level," said Saenz.

The Laredo delegation also visited the White House and met with the Mexican Ambassador to the U.S. They’re keeping an eye on federal talks involving the border, and the North American Free Trade Agreement — NAFTA.

Democratic Congressman Henry Cuellar met with the officials. He says Laredo’s location is key to trade between the U-S and Mexico, so he’ll continue to make the case for more federal resources.

“Make sure we have the right technology, make sure we have the right personnel on our bridges, so all we want to do is present the Laredo story to the Washington policy makers and then from there, they can decide where certain projects should go," said Cuellar.

The big trip closes out Wednesday night with a Laredo Day reception on Capitol Hill. There the delegation will bring the food and culture of Laredo to officials and other guests in DC.

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