Southeastern Governors on Coast for Economic Summit - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

06/01/03

Southeastern Governors on Coast for Economic Summit

Politicians throughout the Southeast have been busy on the Coast this weekend. In fact, four governors from this region of the country are in Biloxi for the 31st Annual Southern Growth Summit.

Governor Ronnie Musgrove is chairman of this year's event. The leaders say they're working together to strengthen the South's economy, and to help improve the quality of life for the people they represent.

Musgrove took to the podium to open this year's Southern Growth Policy Summit. He was flanked by the governors of nearby states.

"One of the great things about a conference like this, it gives governors, as well as other people from our state, the opportunity to talk about what's happening in each individual state, what's working, what's failing, how we can improve our economy and the job market for the people that we serve," said Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee.

Musgrove says he'll be touting this week's opening of the Nissan Assembly Plant in Canton, Mississippi. The new plant is expected to create 5,300 jobs for people in the state.

He said, "The focus of this year's Southern Growth Policy Board is leadership: how to develop the Southeastern part of the United States into a competitive, job-seeking, job-locating area. We've had great success, and a lot of the things we have done here in Mississippi is being used all across the Southeastern United States."

Musgrove said economic developments, like the Nissan Plant, have helped boost the state's reputation for technology, by providing high-paying, high-skilled jobs to people who live in a place that was once known as a low-wage, solely agricultural area. It's successes like this, Musgrove's fellow governors hope to draw from.

Huckabee said, "People are just here to talk about solutions. We all have the same problems with budget shortfalls and challenges of creating jobs. And so, it's not about the politics of it. It really is about better policy."

Toni Miles

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