By Sonny Simmons
Panola Partnership CEO
The beginning of a new year always seems to bring optimism and hope for better things to come. No one knows what the future holds, but we at the Panola Partnership know that we will be working hard to create new opportunities for the citizens of Panola County throughout the coming year.
Overall, 2013 showed us some signs of a recovery and hopefully companies will now begin to make new investments in their operations.
For a community of our size, we have been very fortunate to see four of our existing industries expand this past year, adding jobs and new investment. We have also witnessed the location of our first industry in the new Airport Industrial Complex. And for the first time in over 5 years our unemployment level is under 10 percent.
This year we will continue to make needed improvements to the Airport Industrial park until we have it fully developed. The Mississippi Development Authority and TVA will assist us in getting this accomplished with grants and other assistance.
This year we will also concentrate a lot of our efforts on retail recruitment and development within the city limits of Batesville due to special funding provided by the City of Batesville for this purpose.
We will also be developing new marketing material that will be distributed to site location consultants and interested industries and businesses that will help us maximize our exposure to the world and to highlight what we have to offer.
This will also include a complete upgrade to our Web site to help make it more user friendly and contain all the information needed for a company or business to make the decision to locate here.
We feel good about where we are and where we are going. We will continue to do all we can to bring new opportunities to Panola County and to help make our community the best it can be.
We will look to the future with optimism, we will stay positive, we will invest wisely to prepare for future growth and we will out work our competition. This will be our formula for success and failure is not an option.