Ag distinction award nominees sought

Nominations for induction into the Louisiana Agriculture Hall of Distinction are being accepted through Dec. 15.

The Louisiana Agriculture Hall of Distinction is a joint effort of the LSU AgCenter, Louisiana Radio Network and the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry.

It honors individuals who have made significant contributions to agriculture or agriculture-related industries. Nominations can represent farming, ranching, forestry, aquaculture, fisheries, education or agribusiness.

Inductees will be recognized at a banquet at White Oak Plantation in Baton Rouge on March 5.

The nomination form can be found online at www.louisiana agriculturehallofdistinction.com or through a parish LSU AgCenter extension office.

Auto company removes mercury from switches

A used auto-parts company has removed close to 12 pounds of mercury by pulling more than 5,400 mercury switches from junked cars in the Baton Rouge area.

By pulling the switches, Pull-A-Part prevented the mercury from being released into the environment when the cars are crushed or shredded.

Each switch contains enough mercury to contaminate 132,000 gallons of water, according to Atlanta-based Pull-A-Part. The switches removed in Baton Rouge could have polluted 720 million gallons of water.

The Baton Rouge effort was part of Pull-A-Part’s national campaign. The company removed more than 255,000 switches containing more than 561 pounds of mercury. Those switches could have contaminated more than 33.6 billion gallons of water.

Many vehicles made before 2003 used mercury switches to control lighting under hoods and trucks and in some anti-lock braking systems.

Pull-A-Part served on the Steering Committee of the National Vehicle Mercury Switch Recovery Program, established by the Environmental Protection Agency in 2006. The program’s goal was to recover 80 percent to 90 percent of available mercury switches from scrap vehicles.

Lafayette General opens OB/GYN office

Lafayette General Health has opened an obstetrics and gynecology office, 1325 Wright Ave., Suite K, Crowley.

The office is operated by Dr. Jimmy Skrasek, who offers special services in obstetrical care, women’s health and menopause management.

Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The phone number is (337) 783-1651.

Acadia General signs firm for ER physicians

Acadia General Hospital in Crowley has signed on Schumacher Group in Lafayette to staff its Emergency Room with physicians.

Schumacher, an emergency and hospital medicine group serving hospitals nationwide, will help improve patient flow, efficiency and overall satisfaction.

Acadia General is part of the Lafayette General Health system. Schumacher also provides ER physicians at Lafayette General Medical Center, University Hospital & Clinics and St. Martin Hospital.

Serenity addiction wellness center opens

The Serenity Center of Louisiana Addiction Wellness Center has opened at 2325 Weymouth Drive, Baton Rouge.

The 17,000-square-foot center is a privately owned 30-bed, 30-day residential treatment center for problems of addiction and alcoholism.

The phone number is (225) 361-0899 and website is www.theserenitycenterla.com.

Debt management, finance seminar set

A free seminar on finance and debt management will be offered to the public from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Nov. 13 at the Armed Forces Reserve Center, 8110 Innovation Park Drive, Baton Rouge.

The seminar, sponsored by the Baton Rouge Bar Foundation Pro Bono Project, will explain the impact of credit on a financial future, steering clear of predators and credit traps, how to create and maintain a monthly budget, and activities for kids.