TAP Alliance deal ratification under way

CORINTH – On Tuesday the city of Corinth became the first partner in the newly-organized TAP Alliance to ratify the final agreement.
The city board unanimously approved the agreement presented by Alliance President Gary Chandler. He said the agreement has been thoroughly reviewed by the Mississippi Development Authority and legal counsel and asked for board approval.
“This gives us the organizational structure to move the three-county alliance forward,” Chandler said.
Tishomingo, Alcorn and Prentiss County boards of supervisors, as well as Booneville and Iuka city boards, all will be asked for similar approval.
The group is patterned after the PUL (Pontotoc, Union, Lee) Alliance that successfully built an automotive manufacturing megasite and attracted the Toyota plant. However, the TAP Alliance has no concrete projects being considered as yet.
The state enacted the Regional Economic Development Act in 2000 to enable other counties to collaborate on economic development projects.
Besides the PUL Alliance, a group of about 20 counties in the southwestern part of the state have organizes as the Southwest Partnership “strictly as a marketing effort,” Chandler said.
Once the TAP Alliance agreement is ratified, representatives from each body will meet to elect officers and set an agenda, he said, with the Northeast Mississippi Planning and Development District providing staff support for the group.
Initially each participating group will be asked to provide $5,000 per year in seed money, which will “allow us to pursue state and federal funding as we see fit,” Chandler said.
Contact Lena Mitchell at (662) 287-9822 or lena.mitchell@djournal.com.

Lena Mitchel/NEMS Daily JournaL