Shreveport Times; By: Bobbie J. Clark

Kentucky Fried Chicken recently closed its restaurant in Bastrop.

"It sounds comical," Bastrop Mayor Clarence Hawkins said Tuesday. "But if a chicken place closes in the South, then that's a statement."

He related the story during a hearing in Shreveport to highlight the dire economic situation his Morehouse Parish town has been facing since International Paper Co. closed, putting 550 out of work.

Two panels testified before U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu at the Shreveport Convention Center about the impact manufacturing closures in north Louisiana are having on small businesses and local communities. Landrieu, D-Louisiana, chairs the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship. 

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