Foreign Imports Are Hurting State Timber Industry - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

STATE MUST HELP TIMBER FARMERS

Foreign Imports Are Hurting State Timber Industry

JACKSON, Miss. (AP)

 Foreign imports are carving into Mississippi's forestry industry and the state needs to help landowners and businesses compete, a lawmaker says.

 ``The American people are demanding a cheaper price for lumber,'' said Rep. Bo Eaton, D-Taylorsville. ``We've always been able to provide that in the Southeastern part of the United States. But now there's so much lumber coming in from other parts of the world.''

 Eaton is on a 17-member task force that met for the first time Tuesday at the state Capitol. The group will study Mississippi forestry and make recommendations to legislators by Dec. 1, about a month before the 2002 session starts.

 House Agriculture Committee Chairman Steve Holland, D-Plantersville, said the task force will examine how the state Forestry Commission can help landowners become more productive tree farmers.

 ``We're sort of blowing in the wind, if you will, with the forestry industry,'' Holland said. ``We need to make sure we grow more trees, better trees, more marketable trees.'' Holland said lawmakers might consider tax breaks or other incentives to help timber-related businesses such as furniture makers and paper producers.

 In April, about 350 people lost their jobs when Georgia-Pacific Corp. closed its plywood production facility in Louisville. Plant officials said market conditions were to blame for the shutdown.

 International Paper has announced it will shut its mill in Moss Point and sell its mill in Natchez. The furniture industry in northeast Mississippi has been hit with layoffs.

About 18.6 million acres in Mississippi are covered with forests.

 Lt. Gov. Amy Tuck, opening Tuesday's meeting, said the state's forest-industry jobs pay an average of $25,686. Mississippi ranked 50th in per capita personal income in 1999, with an average of $20,688. ``We must see more from the forest than the trees,'' Tuck said.

The task force is led by lumber company executive Rollin Turnage of Jackson and the director of Mississippi State University's Forest and Wildlife Center, Sam Foster.

Forestry industry figures show production dropped 1.2 percent in value from 1999 to $1.25 billion in 2000. Sawlog prices were steady but slightly lower, but pulpwood prices dropped 18 percent for pine and 16 percent for hardwood.

  • NEWSMore>>

  • Gulfport police officer seriously injured in car crash

    Gulfport police officer seriously injured in car crash

    Monday, January 22 2018 8:32 PM EST2018-01-23 01:32:28 GMT
    A Gulfport police officer is seriously injured after an accident involving a patrol car and a stolen vehicle. (Photo Source: WLOX)A Gulfport police officer is seriously injured after an accident involving a patrol car and a stolen vehicle. (Photo Source: WLOX)
    A Gulfport police officer is on the way to the hospital with serious injuries Monday night after an accident at Three Rivers Road and Creosote Road. Several units responded to the scene. Police tape is blocking the intersection. According to police, officers were attempting to stop a reported stolen vehicle. Police say the driver of that car was taken into custody on the scene. Copyright WLOX 2018. All rights reserved.More >>
    A Gulfport police officer is on the way to the hospital with serious injuries Monday night after an accident at Three Rivers Road and Creosote Road. Several units responded to the scene. Police tape is blocking the intersection. According to police, officers were attempting to stop a reported stolen vehicle. Police say the driver of that car was taken into custody on the scene. Copyright WLOX 2018. All rights reserved.More >>
  • WLOX Editorials: Tell your state legislators to, 'do the right thing'

    WLOX Editorials: Tell your state legislators to, 'do the right thing'

    Monday, January 22 2018 7:04 PM EST2018-01-23 00:04:52 GMT

    The Mississippi State Legislature is back in session and as usual a fight is brewing over money. Still unresolved is what to do with  $750 million coming from BP over 17 years because of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil disaster. To the people here on the coast, there is no question that all of the money should be spent on projects in South Mississippi. But so far, the powers in Jackson and the rest of the state won't agree to that.

    More >>

    The Mississippi State Legislature is back in session and as usual a fight is brewing over money. Still unresolved is what to do with  $750 million coming from BP over 17 years because of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil disaster. To the people here on the coast, there is no question that all of the money should be spent on projects in South Mississippi. But so far, the powers in Jackson and the rest of the state won't agree to that.

    More >>
  • Harrison County Schools take part in Kindness Challenge

    Harrison County Schools take part in Kindness Challenge

    Monday, January 22 2018 5:52 PM EST2018-01-22 22:52:47 GMT

    An attempt to spread kindness on a global scale has made its way to South Mississippi. That's the idea behind the lessons being taught at Harrison County Schools throughout this week.

    More >>

    An attempt to spread kindness on a global scale has made its way to South Mississippi. That's the idea behind the lessons being taught at Harrison County Schools throughout this week.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly