1 Louisiana FastStart’s ranking among the country’s best workforce programs. Business Facilities magazine called it the “gold standard for workforce training solutions” in its August 2010 issue. Louisiana FastStart provides free customized recruitment, screening and training to companies expanding in or relocating to Louisiana. Louisiana also ranked eighth in national business climate. 14 Lafayette’s placing among The Daily Beast’s 20 “recession-proof cities” in the country. The online magazine’s list was based on growth in three categories over the past three years: overall employment, per capita personal income and metro area gross domestic product. Jacksonville, N.C., Fort Hood, Texas, and Fayetteville, N.C, were tops.
3 No. of consecutive years La. has experienced in-migrationU.S. Census
$52.7 million Amount Jindal administration says it has invested in Lafayette Parish road improvements since January 2008: $43.9 million for the Ambassador Caffery Parkway extension, $3.7 million for the overlay of 6.1 miles of La. 1252, and $864,000 for the installation of high-mast lighting at the I-10/La. Avenue interchange.
107 No. of Lafayette Parish residents Gov. Bobby Jindal has appointed to serve on state boards and commissions since he took office in January 2008.
$93 million Amount BP spent on advertising from April to the end of July, the oil giant told the House Energy and Commerce Committee Sept. 1. That’s $5 million a week, more than three times the amount it spent on ads over the same period last year. The company says the money was intended to keep Gulf Coast residents informed on issues related to the oil spill and to ensure transparency about its actions. The money was largely spent on TV, newspaper and magazine ads.
$3.4 billion Estimated value of Nucor Corp.’s project in St. James Parish. The nation’s largest steelmaker, Nucor is planning a multi-phased iron and steel production complex in Convent that will eventually employ 1,250 workers (it hopes to be operating by the end of 2012 with 150 workers).
$75,000 Average pay of Nucor jobs — in a state with a median annual income of about $28,000. The North Carolina steel maker is building a production complex in St. James Parish.
David Calhoun and Elizabeth “EB” Brooks are the first two employees of Lafayette Central Park Inc., the nonprofit charged with turning Lafayette Consolidated Government’s 100-acre Johnston Street Horse Farm property into a passive public park. Calhoun was named executive director, and Brooks is director of planning and design.
There will soon be a whole lot of shakin’ going on at Benny’s Sportshack Supplement Depot, a new concept by Opelousas native Benny Nele. Located at 2002 Johnston St., the supplement shop, smoothie bar and café, featuring hot off the press paninis and wraps, plans to open in late May.