A step forward: Supervisors get last vote on economic development consolidation

Published 7:12 pm Saturday, February 18, 2017

The plan to consolidate Vicksburg and Warren County economic and business development now sits in the laps of the county supervisors.

The plan  needs just one more vote — that of the supervisors.

The Warren County Port Commission, the Vicksburg Board of Mayor and Aldermen and the Vicksburg Warren County Chamber of Commerce have already voted and approved the plan. Tuesday, the supervisors have their chance.

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The consolidation would merge the operations of the chamber, the port commission and economic development under one office, one director.

The votes by the city, the chamber and the port have already backed the salary and the responsibilities for this new director, and the port has already selected and approved the individual who will take charge of the combined economic development effort.

It is not often every part of the county’s business and economic development teams agree as they have on this plan.

We could not offer a stronger endorsement or offer more encouragement for a positive vote by the members of the Warren County Board of Supervisors Tuesday.

The combined office will allow for a united, concerted effort to not only go out and recruit new industries, businesses and jobs, but a more powerful office offering tremendous assistance to existing businesses and industries.

It will provide interested industries one person, one office to reach out to for information and represent completely the interests of both Vicksburg and Warren County.

This merger and overall plan, has been strongly backed by state and federal elected officials, as well as state economic development teams. They too are watching Tuesday’s vote and expect the plan to be approved.

Economic development efforts in Warren County and Vicksburg have often been fragmented and sporadic. This plan, this combined office, will solve that.

But, it all rests on the supervisors and Tuesday’s vote. We urge supervisors to understand the importance of this vote and show the rest of the state and region that Vicksburg and Warren County area truly open for business.