County joins economic development effort

By Russell Hood
The Webster Progress-Times

Webster County supervisors voted Monday to enter into an agreement
with three others counties to establish an economic development
district.

They adopted the “interlocal cooperation agreement” between Webster,
Montgomery, Choctaw and Carroll counties, and authorized its signing,
on Monday. The district will be known as the Regional Economic
Partnership of Mississippi and is being referred to as “REPMS.”

Board President Pat Cummings said the other three county boards had
already adopted the same agreement, which had been amended from an
earlier version at the request of Webster County.

The Webster County Board of Supervisors voted in late September to
contract with Stone-Adams Financial Partners of Jackson to set up a
regional economic development organization within 90 days.

Stone-Adams announced Oct. 1 that efforts to coordinate a partnership
were underway in order to consolidate economic development activities
and resources in Webster, Montgomery and Choctaw counties only.
Carroll County apparently became involved later.

REPMS Details
These are some of the details of the partnership as spelled out in
the agreement:

It will automatically renew each fiscal year unless a county wishes
to withdraw and discontinue participation in the partnership. An
eight-member board of trustees will govern the partnership, being two
supervisors from each county.

The board of trustees has authority to fire or dismiss any employee
of the partnership, including the executive director, upon the
affirmative vote of five of the trustees. The board will appoint a
non-voting secretary/treasurer from one of the participating
counties, and may elect to contract with an administrative assistant
and executive director.

Each county will appoint five people, none of whom may be a current
elected supervisor, to a partnership advisory board.

The board of trustees will set criteria for the financial
participation of each individual county. The financial contribution
of each of the participating counties for the inaugural year will be
$40,000.
The agreement awaits approval by the state Attorney General’s Office,
followed by filing with the chancery clerks of each county, the
secretary of state and state Audit Department.