JACKSON – A construction company with black ownership has filed a federal civil lawsuit against Gov. Haley Barbour, employees of the Mississippi Development Authority and Toyota of North America claiming racial discrimination in the building of a new plant in northeast Mississippi.
The owners of Fish & Fisher, Jacqueline Williams and Renna Fisher, say Barbour, MDA and the car company acted in concert to bar them from participating in what they claim was a whites-only bid process for site preparation.
Representatives for Barbour and Toyota call the lawsuit baseless.
The contract was won by L&T Construction, which is not named in the suit.
Toyota was expected to begin production in late 2010, but has since put a hold on the project because of the economy.
The Associated Press