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“By investing in these sites today, we are laying the foundation on which businesses can quickly locate, grow and create jobs for future generations of Mississippians,” Governor Reeves said.

Governor Tate Reeves today announced that the State of Mississippi is investing nearly $25 million in site development projects across the state. Site development grant funds made available through the Mississippi Development Authority (MDA), Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), and RESTORE Act assist local economic development entities in their efforts to stimulate economic growth by attracting new industries to competitive and start-up sites.

“Ready-to-go sites are a top priority for businesses looking for a new location,” Governor Tate Reeves said. “By investing in these sites today, we are laying the foundation on which businesses can quickly locate, grow and create jobs for future generations of Mississippians.”

The MDA recently awarded a total of $1,637,983 under its Site Development Grants program for projects in the Ready Sites and Premier Sites categories. Ready sites require a minimum of 20 highly developable acres, and the site must be ready for operation within six months and must be able to have utilities on site within 12 months. Ready sites are eligible to receive up to $50,000 in funding. Premier sites require a minimum of 100 acres and must have attributes that set them apart from other properties, such as being in high-demand locations, having large-scale “mega” development acreage, or having significant utility infrastructure already in place. They must also have a workforce capable of attracting the target market. Premier sites are eligible to receive up to $250,000 in funding. Those who have secured funding include:

  • Sites ready
    • Cleveland-Bolivar County Chamber of Commerce – $25,000 for performing environmental due diligence at the Cleveland Industrial Park
    • Jones County Economic Development Authority – $50,000 for drainage improvements at Howard Industrial Park
    • Greene County Board of Supervisors – $50,000 for environmental due diligence at the Greene County Railroad site
    • Harrison County Development Commission – $28,000 for the installation of broadband in the North Harrison County industrial complex
    • Marion County Economic Development District – $50,000 for environmental due diligence and compensation at Columbia New Generation Park
    • Walthall County Board of Supervisors – $49,983.20 for clearance and design and construction of an entrance to US Hwy. 98 Locations
    • Yellow Creek State Inland Ports Authority – $50,000 to conduct environmental due diligence and clearing and grubbing at the Boothe property development at the Port of Yellow Creek
  • Premier Sites
    • Community Development Foundation – $250,000 for the construction of a construction site and an expansion site, and the initial construction of an access road to the HIVE Business Park
    • Hancock County Harbor and Harbor Commission – $250,000 for environmental due diligence at Port Bienville Industrial Park Site #1
    • Madison County Economic Development Authority – $250,000 for clearing and grubbing at the Madison County mega site
    • Panola partnership – $85,000 for the engineering/design of an elevated water reservoir at the Panola County Airport Industrial Park
    • Rankin First Economic Development Authority – $250,000 for the construction of a construction platform at the East Metro Center rail site in the EMC Industrial Park
    • Smith County Economic Development District – $250,000 for infrastructure improvements at the Smith County industrial site

The MDA has also committed $11,642,589 in Site Development Grants – funding for selected sites. The Select Sites program was created in 2021 to increase the number of highly competitive industrial sites in the state that are available and ready to meet the needs of potential businesses. Twenty of the state’s major public industrial sites were assessed by the Greenville, South Carolina-based Strategic Development Group, which was contracted by the state’s electric utilities. Among these sites, the following have been invited to apply for funding for the selected sites, depending on the current availability of funds:

  • Select locations
    • Belwood Industrial Park, Adams County – $1,825,977 to complete the construction of the dike and make drainage improvements
    • Ceres Research and Industrial Interplex – Site B, Warren County – $1,368,000 for stream mitigation, drainage improvements, water and sewer system upgrades and to design entrance improvements
    • Site I-59 South, Jones County – $553,600 for access roads and clearing
    • Supply Chain I-59 Park (at Hattiesburg-Laurel Regional Airport), Jones County – $3,402,858 to improve sanitary sewer capacity; build a construction platform and make the intersection modifications
    • NorthStar Industrial Park, Oktibbeha County – $679,775 for permits and wetland mitigation; clearing, grubbing and grading; and the development of an all-round access road
    • Springs Industrial Park, Marshall County – $346,875 to thin and fell trees
    • University of Southern Mississippi – The Garden, Forrest County – $3,465,504 for clearing, grubbing and grading and construction of an access road

Governor Reeves also approved ARC funding for the NorthStar Industrial Park and invited the site to submit a full application for $2,719,102 in ARC SAAW funding.

RESTORE Act funding in the amount of $8,927,940 is also helping three projects with site development needs. The projects approved on RESTORE Act funds, administered by the Environmental Quality Department, are:

  • Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport – $4,180,000 for development work on a 241-acre economic development site at the airport
  • Hancock County Harbor and Harbor Commission – $2,547,940 for engineering/design and site development works at Stennis International Airport Site #13
  • Hancock County Harbor and Harbor Commission – $2,200,000 for site development at Hancock County Tech Park at Stennis International Airport

“MDA commends each of these communities for taking the initiative to ensure their sites are competitive and ready to meet the unique needs of businesses across a wide range of industries,” said Laura Hipp, Interim Chief Executive Officer of MDA. “Mississippi is a great place to do business, and the continued development of these industrial sites is another attribute we can add to our strong portfolio of competitive business advantages.”

Press release

02/10/2022