La. projects receive Silver Shovel Award

Area Development magazine has recognized Louisiana with a 2020 Silver Shovel Award for one of the nation’s best economic development performances in the past year.

The 2020 Gold & Silver Shovel Awards honor states that create the most significant impact from 10 leading investment and job creation projects during 2019. Louisiana’s award was in the category for states of 3 million to 5 million people.

This is the ninth time in 11 years that Louisiana has won Area Development’s Silver Shovel Award. The magazine evaluates states, giving weighted scores for high-valued jobs per capita, the amount of investment, the number of new facilities and industry diversity. Projects submitted by Louisiana represent more than $7.2 billion in capital investment and 1,800 new direct jobs.

Louisiana’s projects included LHC Group’s 500-job home office expansion in Lafayette and Medline’s 464-job distribution center near Covington. Four of the year’s industry announcements featured large capital investment components: South Louisiana Methanol’s $2.2 billion methanol complex in St. James Parish, Valero/Diamond Green Diesel’s $1.5 billion alkylation and renewable diesel projects in Norco, a $1.4 billion investment by Methanex for a methanol plant in Geismar and Shell Chemical’s plans for a $1.2 billion manufacturing expansion at Geismar.

Other Louisiana projects include Bagwell Energy’s 240-job expansion at its Port of Delcambre fabrication center, ExxonMobil’s $469 million investment for a propylene manufacturing unit in Baton Rouge, Ernst & Young’s addition of 200 corporate jobs in New Orleans and SNF’s $375 million expansion for its polymer production plant in Plaquemine.

H&E Equipment opens larger Temple facility

Baton Rouge-based H&E Equipment Services Inc. has relocated its Georgetown branch to an expanded facility in Temple, Texas.

The company said the Temple facility is more strategically located just off of Interstate 35 in Texas to serve contractors with faster response times to Temple, Belton, Killeen, Waco and surrounding areas.

The 20,000-square-foot facility sits on 6 acres with a fully fenced yard area, offices, parts warehouse and a six-bay shop. The service department is capable of handling repairs for a variety of general, industrial, construction and earthmoving equipment. In addition to a large equipment rental fleet, the facility provides expanded new and used equipment sales, parts availability within 24 hours for most items, in-shop and mobile service repairs, training and other services.

The branch specializes in earthmoving equipment, aerial lifts, telescopic forklifts and general construction machinery from various manufacturers.

H&E has 20 locations in Texas and additional locations nationwide throughout the Pacific Northwest, West Coast, Intermountain, Southwest, Gulf Coast, Southeast and mid-Atlantic regions.

Agency starts youth career program

Tri-Parish Works has started a Youth Career Development Program for ages 16 to 24.

The program targets participants in St. Tammany, St. Bernard or Plaquemines parishes with low income and/or who have life challenges such as pregnant or single parenting, lacking a high school diploma, in foster care or aged-out, unstable home, previously arrested or have been diagnosed with a disability.

The program prepares participants and puts them to work earning a paycheck while learning life skills. Tri-Parish Works offers online training, career coaching and can helps participants attain their high school diploma. They also link to mentors and learn study skills, critical financial knowledge and résumé and interview prep.

Information is at

Tri-Parish Works is a public workforce development entity overseen by the First Planning District Workforce Development Board.