Barbour Presents Shipyard With $40 Million Dollar Check

"Hi, I'm Haley Barbour."

Governor Barbour smiled as he shook the hands with shipyard worker.

He thanked them for their hard work and even cracked a joke or two.

"They're paying you for this time off, aren't they?" he asks.

Barbour made a point of setting a positive tone for the check presentation ceremony.

"This is a large check,"he says."It's also a pretty good size piece of cardboard."

The $40 million dollars will help Northrop Grumman make some improvements at the Pascagoula shipyard.

"We will use this money, when the bonds are issued, the plan for this 40-million dollars are blast and paint facilities here, continuation of the west bay expansion, and coverage for the new automated panel line that we bought with last year's installment from the state,"Northrop Grumman president Philip Dur says.

The state has pledged $150 million dollars in bonds paid over four years to help Mississippi's largest employer.

Northrop Grumman will match that amount, making a total investment of $300 million dollars worth of improvements here and at the Gulfport facility.

"This is the shipyard that does the best work whether it's for the United States Navy or soon to be for the United States Coast Guard," Barbour says.

Dur says the upgrades will increase productivity, accuracy, and efficiency.

"We get those things right, there's not a shipyard in this country that can touch this one,"Dur adds.

Barbour says the only way Northrop Grumman is guaranteed ship building contracts for the future is by continuing its investment in the present.