BBB plans business matchmaking event

The Better Business Bureau of South Louisiana will host a “matchmaking” business event from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. April 29 at the Holiday Inn Baton Rouge South, 9940 Airline Highway.

Participants in the “speed dating for businesses” will have 1½ minutes rotating to each table to present their companies or services. Brochures and samples may be used.

For more information, contact BJ Militello at (225) 346-8343 or email bjm@batonrouge.bbb.org.

L.W. Survey Co. opens office in Lafayette

LW Survey Co. has opened an office at 1602 W. Pinhook Road, Suite 300A, Lafayette.

The company said the office will help it better serve clients by providing a local presence.

LW Survey specializes in cross-country utility routing for the communications and energy sectors with services in pipeline construction survey, design/GIS services and data integrity.

Title, escrow company expands to New Iberia

Lafayette-based Tuten Title & Escrow has expanded into New Iberia in a merger with David Groner PLC.

Tuten Title & Escrow was founded in 2011. Services include closing, escrow and title insurance services for residential and commercial purchases and refinances as well as title curative work necessary to close a transaction.

Groner, a native of New Iberia, founded his company in 1982 and has been an active trial lawyer during his career.

“We are excited to have an experienced and trusted attorney like David aboard our team,” said Rye Tuten, owner of Tuten, Title & Escrow.

Campers to Go adds U-Haul services

Campers to Go at 18460 La. 16 in Port Vincent has added new rental options as a U-Haul neighborhood dealer.

The U-Haul service includes trucks, trailers, support rental items, towing equipment and accessories.

Monya and Clay Crowell are the owners of Campers to Go.

The Crowells plan to expand their business by moving to a new location a mile down the road. Hours of operation are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

The website is http://www.uhaul.com/Locations/Truck-Rentals-near-Port-Vincent-LA or call (225) 698-2101.

Decision allows credit for pro bono work

Lawyers in Louisiana who do pro bono work can receive up to three hours of continuing legal education credit each year, effective May 1.

An order allowing the CLE credit was signed by Chief Justice Bernette J. Johnson of the Louisiana Supreme Court. This followed a proposal by attorneys from law firm Adams and Reese LLP, working with retired Louisiana Supreme Court Justice Harry T. Lemmon on a project for Louisiana Appleseed.

Attorneys can receive one hour of CLE credit for every five hours of pro bono representation, up to a maximum of three hours of CLE credit per year. Lawyers in Louisiana are required to earn 12.5 hours of CLE credit to maintain his or her license.

“Our belief and hope is that this will help significantly to increase the number of lawyers providing legal services to many in need who otherwise would have gone without representation,” said Martin Stern, a Louisiana Appleseed board member and partner in the Adams and Reese New Orleans office.

Group studying rural wealth, development

Matt Fannin, an LSU AgCenter economist and associate professor in the LSU College of Agriculture, is part of a group that received $500,000 to study rural communities and regional development.

The funds are part of $14 million in grants awarded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture through its Agriculture Food and Research Initiative to support programs aimed at increasing prosperity in rural America.

Fannin said he will focus on measuring and modeling rural wealth for sustained and broad-based rural prosperity.

“In our society, we measure what we value — the number of jobs created, unemployment rate. We want to find more effective ways of measuring wealth, particularly some of these wealth measures that are not traded in the marketplace,” Fannin said.

Fannin leads a team that includes Tom Johnson, of the Rural Policy Research Institute at the University of Missouri, and John Pender, of the USDA Economic Research Service.

“If we can measure their value, then we have a way to understand how to more effectively invest in those assets and look at how they generate returns,” he said.

Another component of the grant is education. Fannin said the grant will help redevelop curricula around wealth-creation.

Fannin’s work stems from a book he helped write and co-edit, “Rural Wealth Creation.”

“Many rural communities are seeing stagnant or declining populations, and in Louisiana, they often have high poverty, so we need to look at alternative ways to create and sustain wealth,” Fannin said.

Soybean, grain board provides research funds

The Louisiana Soybean and Grain Research and Promotion Board has awarded the LSU AgCenter nearly $1.9 million for 2015 to continue conducting research and extension programs that benefit the industry.

“This is the largest award they have given us,” said Rogers Leonard, associate vice chancellor and program leader for plant and soil sciences. “Our goal is to improve their bottom line through our research and educational programs. Our scientists could not be successful without this funding.”

The board’s sources of funding are the national and state checkoff programs for soybeans, grain sorghum, wheat and corn, in which farmers give a percentage of the proceeds from crop sales.

The projects funded address various issues that adversely affect crop production. These include management of weeds, insect pests and diseases.

Another challenge in growing these crops is the high cost of fertilizer. Researchers are trying to determine how to optimize crop yields with as little fertilizer as possible, which saves money and the environment.

There also is a need to study irrigation management so no water is wasted.

AgCenter researchers and educators also test crop varieties under various conditions and make recommendations for use based on individual farming situations.

A new project funded this year will expedite development of potential technologies to reduce the numbers of feral hogs in Louisiana. These destructive animals are causing major damage to agricultural lands, Leonard said.

Verizon invests in La. improvements

Verizon Wireless said it invested $99.5 million over the past year to improve its wireless network across south Louisiana.

Improvements were aimed at faster, more reliable wireless calling, data streaming and Web surfing.

The investment included enhancements to its XLTE and 4G LTE services, with new cell sites and projects to expand services for its customers.

In 2014, Verizon Wireless deployed XLTE technology to Baton Rouge, Lake Charles, Alexandria and Lafayette, as well as other locations in Louisiana.

Workshops set on soil health, crops, forage

The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service in Louisiana is holding soil health workshops for farmers and ranchers.

Topics include soil health, cover crops and forage management in pasture and row crop production. NRCS will also demonstrate the benefits of improving soil health and cover with a rainfall simulation trailer.

Pre-registration is not required for the free workshops.

The workshops will be held from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Wednesday at the DeWitt Livestock Facility, 100 Gregg Marshall Drive, Alexandria, and Thursday at the Pointe Coupee Multi-Use Center, 1400 Major Parkway, New Roads.

For more information, contact Michael Lindsey at (318) 473-7757 or e-mail michael.lindsey@la.usda.gov.

Gulf safety technology to be presented

The Marine Well Containment Co. will present the latest technology for safe operations in the Gulf of Mexico from noon to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday at The Roosevelt New Orleans, 130 Roosevelt Way, in New Orleans.

MWCC was created in 2010 to ensure continuous preparation for responding to a deepwater well control incident in the Gulf. Less than a year later, it introduced a containment solution, improving response capabilities and helping the oil and gas industry get back to work in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.

MWCC has 10 member companies involved in deepwater drilling in the U.S. Gulf.

MWCC will discuss investments and steps taken by the industry to advance safety in the Gulf during the last five years.

In addition to MWCC, representatives from Grow Louisiana Coalition and Greater New Orleans Inc. will participate in the event.

The event is free, but seating is limited. Make reservations at info@www.growlouisianacoalition.com.