Special session approves incentive package

By District 35 Rep. Joey Hood

On Wednesday, April 24, Governor Phil Bryant called a special session
of the Legislature for Friday, April 26. This special session was
devoted to an economic project aimed at securing Yokohama Tire
Corporation’s establishment in West Point.
The House Ways and Means Committee met at 9 a.m. on Friday for a
briefing on the project. Upon gaveling in at 10 a.m., Representative
Lataisha Jackson was sworn in to office. She replaces Representative
Joe Gardner who passed away in February. Following the swearing in of
Representative Jackson, the Speaker recessed the House subject to
call of the chair.
The Ways and Means Committee members received the bill and met to
review it. Initial bonding for the bill will be a $70 million
incentive package that consists of funds to purchase the land,
provide public infrastructure and site prep, and invest in local
workforce development. Future bonding will consist of an additional
$60 million for other phases through the coming years as the company
expands. Over the course of time, this will be a $130 million
investment in Yokohama Tire Corporation for the state of Mississippi.
Based on an analysis by the state’s economist, the principle and
interest of the bonds will be paid off in 10 years and an additional
$1.1 billion in state revenue will be generated. Members voted to
pass the bill out of committee to the House floor.
Upon this action, members were called back to the House floor to
discuss the bill as a body. I believe this will be an economic boom
not only to West Point, but to District 35 and the state as a whole.
With the establishment of Yokohama, the West Point area will
initially see an additional 500 jobs, with future expectations of
2,000 jobs at the end of the fourth phase of the project. The 2,000
jobs figure does not include the indirect jobs that will be created
as the result of Yokohama Tire Corporation’s establishment in West
Point.
The House and Senate approved and passed the bill. House members
passed the bill by a vote of 117-2. I voted for the bill. Governor
Bryant invited me to the bill signing and I was proud to be a part of
this historical economic development project that will benefit our
surrounding areas as well as District 35.
I would like to thank the people of District 35 for allowing me the
opportunity to serve. If you have any questions or need any
assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me at any time. You can
contact me at the Capitol at P. O. Box 1018, Jackson, Mississippi
39215 or call (601) 359-3339. You may also email me at
jhood@house.ms.gov or visit my website at www.joeyhoodmississippi.com.