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Vicksburg Forest Products to add 60 full-time jobs and invest $40 million

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The Vicksburg Warren Economic Development Partnership announced Wednesday that Vicksburg Forest Products is expanding its operations in Vicksburg to respond to market opportunities and accommodate new customers. The expansion will allow Vicksburg Forest Products to create 60 direct jobs and invest $40 million in corporate investments.

In 2018, Vicksburg Forest Products purchased the former Anderson Tully sawmill. The facility underwent a large-scale transformation and is currently producing approximately 75 million board feet of Southern Yellow Pine lumber on an annualized basis. Post expansion, Vicksburg Forest Products will be capable of producing 180 million board feet of lumber per year, consisting of a diverse product mix to better serve customers. The upgraded mill will be purchasing approximately 800,000 tons of timber annually from landowners in the surrounding areas. The company has signed a turnkey contract with a leading equipment provider and construction is scheduled to begin in October and will be completed next summer.

“We look forward to working with the local economic community and the State of Mississippi to support further investment in our facility and the surrounding area,” said Billy Van Devender, manager, VFP, in a statement. “We are excited about the long-term prospects of our Vicksburg operations.”

Gov. Tate Reeves added his endorsement of the project.

“With nearly 20 million acres of forestland in Mississippi, our state is positioned for continued growth in the agribusiness sector, as evidenced by Vicksburg Forest Products’ significant expansion just over two years after opening its doors in Vicksburg,” Reeves said. “I appreciate the leadership at Vicksburg Forest Products for its commitment to doing business in Warren County and building stronger communities through job creation.”

Mayor George Flaggs Jr. added, “We are proud to see Vicksburg Forest Products expanding and creating new jobs in our community. I believe it’s worth noting that the company’s willingness to make such an important investment in Vicksburg is a testament to the pro-business environment of our city. COVID-19 has created trying times for many in our community, and these 60 jobs will be a blessing for 60 families that can get back to normal through the dignity of work.”

The City of Vicksburg is supporting the project with infrastructure improvements including drainage and rail expansions on the site through grants provided to the city by the Mississippi Development Authority.

“What a wonderful example of what our community can do when we pull together to grow our economy,” Dr. Jeff Holland, president of the Warren County Board of Supervisors, said of the expansion. “A quality employer making quality investments to grow a quality community. I applaud this investment and those who have chosen to make it”

Don Brown, chairman of the Warren County Port Commission, added, “The Warren County Port Commission commends Vicksburg Forest Products for believing in our workforce and in our community. This expansion is a very positive boost for the Port of Vicksburg and for the many families that will benefit by the jobs created.”

Announcements

Governor announces two MS Board of Ed appointments

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Gov. Tate Reeves announced two Mississippi State Board of Education appointments Tuesday: Angela Bass from Jackson and Glen East from Gulfport. The appointees reflect the Governor’s commitment to continuous improvement in education.

“Mississippi’s children deserve our steadfast commitment to improving education. We must continue to improve outcomes for these students without fear of upsetting the status quo. I am confident that Angela and Glen will serve with honor and represent the interest of parents, teachers and — most importantly — students. Their achievement has to be our top priority,” Reeves said in a statement.

Dr. Angela Bass served as a Teach for America corps member and studied education policy and management at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, later becoming a teacher in both the Tunica and Desoto County school districts and an administrator at the KIPP Memphis Collegiate High School. She currently serves as the Executive Director of the Mississippi Early Learning Alliance.

Mr. Glen East serves as the Superintendent of the Gulfport School District. The district represents 10 schools and approximately 5,800 students. It has been designated an Excellence for All School District.

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Alcorn State University, IRS and USDA partner to provide webinar on Economic Impact Payment 

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(Photo courtesy Alcorn State University)

Alcorn State University, the Internal Revenue Service and the USDA Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement have partnered to provide a webinar on the upcoming Economic Impact Payment.

During this Zoom meeting, participants will discuss strategies to help eligible Mississippi residents get their Economic Impact Stimulus payments. Individuals who were excluded from automatic delivery of payments must sign up by Oct. 15 to get their stimulus check this year.

The webinar is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 8, 2020, from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. (3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST) via Zoom.

Register for the meeting online.
Zoom Webinar ID: 851 3831 6826
Passcode: 185598

Register by phone at 408-638-0968 | Code: 85138316826# or
646-876-9923 | Code: 85138316826#

For more information, contact Jacqueline A. Davis-Slay, deputy director, Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement, United States Department of Agriculture, 202-720-2032

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Announcements

Seven VWSD students selected for state Student Advisory Council

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Seven students from the Vicksburg Warren School District have been selected to serve on the Mississippi Department of Education Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council.

  • Mary Katherine Archer – River City Early College
  • Riddhi Patel – River City Early College
  • Marquasia Smith – Vicksburg High School
  • Bobbie Sorrels – Vicksburg High School
  • Gregory Taylor – Vicksburg High School
  • Garrett Lee – Warren Central High School
  • Teyanna Monroe – Warren Central High School

The council includes students in grades 11 and 12 or in their first year of college to serve as members for a term of two school years.

More than 300 students from across the state applied for membership on the council and 163 were selected. They will join the more than 70 students who were selected in 2019.

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