Main Street celebrated at State Capitol for record of success
Published 5:52 pm Wednesday, March 8, 2023
On March 2, the Mississippi Main Street Association (MMSA) hosted its first Main Street Legislative Day at the Mississippi State Capitol.
Vicksburg Main Street Executive Director Kim Hopkins was in attendance, and she said she enjoyed being part of the larger body of Mississippi Main Street.
“It was great to come together with Main Streets all over Mississippi to celebrate small businesses and all of our accomplishments promoting downtown,” Hopkins said.
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Serving as guest speakers for the event were Lt. Gov. Delbert Hosemann and Speaker of the House Philip Gunn.
Hosemann, in his remarks, touted the significance of Mississippi Main Streets.
“Local Main Street Associations across the State are making our communities a great place to live and raise a family,” Hosemann said. “These thriving, yet quaint, communities are showing the world that Mississippi is a great place to visit, and it exhibits the pride our residents have to be Mississippians.”
Hopkins said listening to Hosemann praise Mississippi Main Streets was one of the best parts of the day.
“Hearing him say, ‘Main Street is Mississippi,’ was one of the highlights,” she said.
Mississippi Main Streets are also having a positive economic impact on communities, Gunn said.
“Dollar for dollar, Main Street has proven to be one of Mississippi’s most successful programs at bringing new jobs and businesses to our downtowns,” Gunn said. “Main Street helps attract visitors to our state and provides quality of life for Mississippi residents, which in turn, drives Mississippi’s local economies.”
In a press release from MMSA, in 2022, Mississippi Main Street’s 48 designated communities helped generate 495 new businesses, 841 new jobs, 56 business expansions, and catalyzed $82 million in private investment, and $160 million in public investment in Mississippi’s Main Street districts.
“As our reported 2022 economic impact numbers reveal, Main Street is an effective economic development program, with an impressive record of success in creating small business growth and sustainable jobs, all of which catalyze public and private investment in Mississippi’s communities,” said Thomas Gregory, MMSA Executive Director.
“We are so thankful for the Mississippi Legislature’s support of our work, and we look forward to continuing to be Mississippi’s premier statewide organization for downtown revitalization and local economic development,” Gregory added.
“Main Streets in Mississippi are at the core of economic development efforts,” Hopkins said. “The quality of life of your downtown shows so much about your city, and we are so fortunate to have a strong downtown in Vicksburg as well as many strong downtowns across the state of Mississippi.”