BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu has said her top priority as the new chairwoman of the Senate energy committee is working on efforts to steer more offshore oil and gas drilling money to Louisiana's treasury for coastal restoration efforts.

Landrieu's Senate race challenger, Republican Congressman Bill Cassidy, said Landrieu has the perfect opportunity to tackle that goal with a House-passed bill that would do just that.

Cassidy urged the Democratic senator in a letter Friday to let her Energy and Natural Resources Committee consider the legislation, saying an amendment he included in the bill could mean billions of additional dollars for Louisiana's coastal rebuilding plan.