Barbour Addresses Development Of The State - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

07/01/05

Barbour Addresses Development Of The State

As Governor Haley Barbour helped celebrate Republican victories, he was gearing up for yet another celebration - the passage of his Momentum Mississippi bill.

Lawmakers reached an agreement on the bill Thursday evening.

"It looks like the Momentum Mississippi bill will have final passage tonight, including the funding, which means that we'll not only be able to better compete for industries that create more better, higher paying jobs, but they will be able to take advantage of the strengths we have in Mississippi," said Barbour.

The governor has been diligently pushing this package which he believes will help spur economic development in the state.

It calls for $28 million in bonds to be given to existing Mississippi businesses. It also gives tax breaks to those businesses.

However, the terms of the package have been the main reasons behind the governor's call of two special sessions.

"You can't leave crucial things lying around because the legislators are not able to agree.People talk about being tired of special sessions. I'm tired of special sessions. I imagine most of the legislators are, but the point is we could not go into the beginning of the fiscal year without passing a budget. We had to have a special session for that purpose. And the same thing, if we're going to compete for jobs, better higher paying jobs, we had to pass Momentum Mississippi," Barbour said.

He believes the package will place our state on a higher plane, and he's pleased the legislators believe the same.

Lawmakers signed off on $40 million in bonds for Momentum Mississippi - even more than the governor's proposed $28 million.

By Karla Redditte

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