Campus Federal CU opens OLOL branch

Campus Federal Credit Union has opened a relocated and remodeled branch at Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center in Medical Plaza II, Suite 2008.

The location is the credit union’s fifth in Baton Rouge.

Our Lady of the Lake Regional Federal Credit Union merged with Campus Federal in April 2012 to provide greater branch access, expanded product availability, electronic access and services to members.

The branch has member services personnel, 24-hour cash dispense machines and safe deposit boxes. It also features Campus Connect, which gives customers the option to initiate a video call to a Campus Federal representative to complete activities that are typically conducted with a branch teller.

The credit union’s website is campusfederal.org and the phone number is (225) 769-8841.

Brecheen Pipe finishes warehouse expansion

Brecheen Pipe and Steel, a locally owned steel service center at 2340 American Way in Port Allen, has completed a major warehouse expansion.

The expansion will house the company’s new aluminum, stainless and exotic alloy division.

The division adds to Brecheen’s stocked items of carbon steel plates, structurals, grating, pipe, valves and fittings and galvanized materials. The company, founded in 1980, also has plate-cutting services with CNC plasma/oxyfuel capabilities.

Rickey Heroman’s center underway

Construction has started on a Rickey Heroman’s-anchored retail center at Riverside Landing on Bass Boulevard at Range Avenue in Denham Springs.

The 15,200-square-foot retail center is expected to be completed in March.

In addition to Rickey Heroman’s Florist and Gifts, tenants will include Firehouse Subs and Red Wing Shoes.

The center is being leased by John R. Buzzell of NAI/ Latter & Blum.

Lafayette General completes expansion

Lafayette General Medical Center has completed an expansion of its emergency and operating rooms.

The hospital broke ground on the $52.5 million expansion and renovation project two years ago.

The expanded portion of the ER took its first patient on April 15, while the first surgery was done in the new operating suites on June 1, with the renovated portion of the ER completed recently.

The new ER capacity is up to 45 beds and occupies 32,000 square feet with two new trauma rooms. The increased space allows the hospital to treat over 100,000 ER patients annually. The entire expansion added approximately 82,000 square feet to LGMC for a total of 587,902 square feet.

The surgery platform features 13 larger operating rooms utilizing the latest in sterilization and anti-microbial technology. The exterior of the ER features a new ambulance entrance and a hazmat containment and decontamination area.

A new set of entry doors along the west side was part of the project.

United Country franchise opens

A United Country Real Estate franchise has opened at 18157 East Petroleum Drive in Baton Rouge.

Warren Peters is the franchise owner and broker of United Country – Peters Forest Resources Inc.

“For some time, we have felt we could leverage our expertise in forestry, timberland and recreational property management to build a strong rural real estate brokerage business,” Peters said.

Services include a rural real estate website, national real estate catalogs, national advertising of local properties and a database of more than 500,000 buyers. The franchise also will offer home warranties, home mortgages, land financing, 1031 tax services and other real estate transaction services.

The phone number is (225) 751-3553 and email is wpeters@peters-fr.com. Listings are at UC-PFR.com.

Founded in 1925, United Country supports nearly 600 offices and 5,000 real estate professionals across four continents.

dd’s Discounts opens location in Gretna

The LSU AgCenter and U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency will hold 13 educational meetings to help Louisiana farmers prepare for changes in the new farm bill.

The Agricultural Act of 2014 changes the way support payments are calculated. The law ends direct payment subsidies, so farmers must now choose between two income support programs — agriculture risk coverage and price loss coverage. The deadline for signing up for the 2014 crop will be sometime in early 2015.

Presentations will include information on projected economic outcomes and evaluation of farm bill decision options given current and projected commodity market prices as well as current crop yields in Louisiana.

The meeting locations in south Louisiana and dates are:

CROWLEY: Oct. 15, 8 a.m., Acadia Parish Extension Office, 157 Cherokee Drive.

WELSH: Oct. 15, 2 p.m., Welsh Community Center, 201 St. Elms St.

THIBODAUX: Oct. 16, 2 p.m., Envie, 207 East Bayou Road.

OPELOUSAS: Oct. 27, 8 a.m., Opelousas Civic Center, 1638 Creswell Lane Extension, Suite 2.

PORT ALLEN: Oct. 28, 8 a.m., West Baton Rouge Conference Center, 2750 North Westport Drive.

MANSURA: Oct. 30, 8 a.m., Avoyelles Parish Extension Office, 8592 Highway 1.

BAYOU VISTA: Nov. 3, 2 p.m., Bayou Vista Community Center, 1333 Belleview St.

For information, contact Mike Salassi at MSalassi@agcenter.lsu.edu or (225) 578-2713.

Arts businesses selected for training

Twelve Louisiana businesses with a focus on the arts have been selected as participants in the first Catapult Fund entrepreneurship training and funding program.

The Catapult Fund is a new program of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation and four partners: the Louisiana Cultural Economy Foundation, Capital One bank, the Louisiana Small Business Development Center and the Ashé Cultural Arts Center.

The program consists of a six-week “boot camp,” with intensive instruction in accounting, marketing, insurance and other topics.

Participants also will write business plans, suitable for submitting to banks or other potential funders. The business plans will be evaluated by the Catapult Fund team, and the best ones will have access to a pool of $50,000 in grant funding provided by the Jazz & Heritage Foundation.

Selected for participation in the training are Joie Petite Designs, Art Gallery and Studio LLC in Zachary; Lullaby Sound Design in Lafayette; and from New Orleans: Audiowood; Baller Quest Bicycles & Equipment; Blissett Textile; Catapult Theatrical Studio LLC; Elysian Post & Production LLC; Freddi W. Evans; New Orleans Book & Paper Lab; New Orleans Design, Development & Manufacture LLC; Passion Dance Center LLC; and Where Y’Art LLC.

Grant to help train dislocated workers

Business & Career Solutions Centers in the Baton Rouge area have received a federal grant to find workers and employers to help train dislocated workers in high-demand occupations in the industrial construction, oil/gas, chemical and shipbuilding industries.

The Workforce Investment Act/National Emergency Grant program provides apprenticeship, on-the-job and classroom training to high-priority groups of dislocated workers such as veterans who left military service within 48 months and long-term unemployed workers who have been out of work for at least 27 weeks and are unlikely to return to their previous field.

Employers may be reimbursed under the on-the-job training program for a portion of the trainee’s wages up to a maximum of 1,040 hours.

For more information, employers can contact any Business & Career Solutions Center. Dislocated workers can submit applications Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., and Thursday from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. at any location.

ASCENSION PARISH: 1721 South Burnside, Gonzales; (225) 647-5557 or (225) 644-0335.

EAST BATON ROUGE PARISH: 4523 Plank Road, Baton Rouge; (225) 358-4579; or 1991 Wooddale Blvd., Baton Rouge; (225) 925-4312.

EAST/WEST FELICIANA PARISHES: 5681 Commerce St., Suite E, St. Francisville; (225) 635-6635.

IBERVILLE/WEST BATON ROUGE PARISHES: 23425 Railroad Ave., Suite 1, Plaquemine; (225) 687-0969.

LIVINGSTON PARISH: 9384 Florida Blvd., Suite B, Walker; (225) 667-1874.

POINTE COUPEE PARISH: 206 Court St., New Roads; (225) 638-6852.

TANGIPAHOA/ST. HELENA PARISHES: 1745 SW Railroad Ave., Suite 201, Hammond; (985) 902-4200.

WASHINGTON PARISH: 420 Ave. B, Bogalusa; (985) 545-1050.

Mississippi River partnership formed

A national partnership has been formed with 18 community foundations serving communities along the Mississippi River.

The announcement was part of a recent two-day annual meeting of the Mississippi River Cities and Towns Initiative, an effort comprised of 65 river mayors committed to creating a coordinated voice for the Mississippi River.

An agreement to work together toward sustainable river projects was signed by Dominik Knoll, chairman of the World Trade Center Mississippi River Alliance, and Don Hickman, chairman of the Mississippi River Partnership of Community Foundations.

The partnership aims at building investments around river-centric projects at the local level. The collaboration helps connect community foundations with local world trade centers that can assist with Mississippi River initiatives.

Officials noted that the river is the “ecological linchpin” to the 37-state Mississippi River Basin; is responsible for creating $200 billion worth of U.S. goods and services; provides drinking water for more than 18 million people; transports 62 percent of the nation’s agricultural output; and directly supports more than 1 million jobs.

Additionally, the alliance represents some of the nation’s largest exporters and export-related businesses, from banks to car manufacturers to oil and gas companies.

Charter school group conference scheduled

The Louisiana Association of Public Charter Schools will hold its seventh annual conference from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Oct. 21 at the Crowne Plaza Baton Rouge, 4728 Constitution Ave., in Baton Rouge.

The event, titled “7th Inning Stretch: Charters. Choice. Change,” features a keynote luncheon with Tim King, president and CEO of Urban Prep Academies.

Other activities include a breakfast panel with state Education Superintendent John White, Curt Eysink, of the Louisiana Workforce Commission; Michael Hecht, of Greater New Orleans Inc.; and Chief Judge Ulysses Gene Thibodeaux, of the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.

There will be more than 20 breakout sessions.

To register for the conference, go to www.lacharterschools.org. Tickets are $175 for LAPCS members and $200 for nonmembers. There is a buy three get one free special and individual or group tickets available for the power breakfast and keynote luncheon. For event details, contact nchatelain@lacharterschools.org.