Sep 03 2013
Miss. Lawmakers Support Efforts to Expand State’s Vital Port
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and Congressman Steven Palazzo (R-Miss.) today welcomed a new report highlighting the state’s progress to repair and grow the Port of Gulfport.
Major findings in the Mississippi Development Authority’s (MDA) Status Report include the creation of 1,200 new jobs, increased acreage for new tenants, accelerated pace of construction, and a $50 million investment for the Island View hotel as part of commercial developments.
“As a longtime supporter of expanding Mississippi’s ports, I’m excited about the developments outlined in this report,” Wicker said. “Recovery from Hurricane Katrina and the expansion of the Port of Gulfport are critical to the economy of the Gulf Coast and the entire state. The Port of Gulfport is well on its way to maximizing its potential as a first-class center of business and transportation.”
"The Port of Gulfport is a key component of the economy in South Mississippi and our state. Governor Bryant's progress report is informative and encouraging in that it recommends challenging, yet obtainable, goals to move this project forward," Cochran said.
“Governor Bryant and new Port Director Jonathan Daniels made progress at the Port of Gulfport a top priority, and this report shows that their hard work is paying off,” Palazzo said. “I commend them on recent successes and I will continue working at the federal level, with House Transportation Chairman Bill Shuster and others, to support economic development at the Port of Gulfport."
The report is a joint effort between MDA, the Mississippi State Port Authority, and Governor Phil Bryant. Following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, then-Governor Haley Barbour, along with state officials and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, worked to secure a comprehensive plan to repair and grow the Port of Gulfport.
Governor Bryant commissioned the report in 2012 to review the project’s progress in completing a restoration and expansion of the port.