West Point has a new industry recruitment tool

Reported by: Susan Parker
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Updated: 7/12/2013 5:45 pm
WEST POINT, Miss. (WTVA) -- Lynn Horton used to work at Bryan Foods-a company founded in the 30's in West Point.

He remembers when it closed.

"It was rough. Once upon a time Bryan Foods employed over 2,000 people in Clay County and the Golden Triangle and so it was devastating when they announced the closing," Horton said.

Economic Development officials would like nothing more than to do something with the old Bryan Foods property, but the challenge before them is anyone who buys something is going to want to know the quality of the land.

With that in mind, West Point Grant Writer Melanie Busby tried to win a grant for the city that would help pay for environmental studies on properties.

The city won not one but two $200,000 Environmental Protection Agency Brownfield Grants.

"When they walk in the door we're able to give them that information and it not cost them $3-10,000 or whatever," Busby said.

Ron Maloney could not agree more. The recent recruitment of tire manufacturer Yokohama had everything to do with careful planning and extensive prep work that could be presented on demand.

"We as a community want to be able to slide across the table in similar fashion and say here's what has been done. Here's the environmental on it. Here's what you need to worry about or not worry about and plan for," Maloney said.

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