The Mississippi Economic Council (MEC) has been named State Chamber of the Year by the National Association of State Chambers (NASC).
The honor, which was founded by the NASC in 2016, honors a single state chamber each year that has distinguished itself by providing exceptional services and outstanding results for its members. MEC is the first Mississippi chamber of commerce to win the award.
“As the state chamber, MEC connects businesses from all regions of Mississippi with a shared goal of growing our state’s competitiveness,” MEC President and CEO Scott Waller said. “The tremendous support of members from all business sectors is the driving force for initiative and effectively advocating proactive public policy, helping create opportunities for all Mississippians.”
Following its completion of 51 small-group discussions in 18 regions of the state, MEC released its “Securing Mississippi’s Future: Vision for Economic Growth” report earlier this calendar year, providing public policy recommendations to state legislators.
Key public policy achievements for MEC in 2022 include:
- The Comprehensive Career and Technical Education Reform Act is a transformational approach to improving career pathways. It aligns CTE courses at the high school and community college levels, requiring a return-on-investment analysis. It also creates career readiness assessments.
- The Strategically Accelerating the Recruitment and Retention of Teachers (START) Act of 2022 is a $250 million annual investment for teachers, increasing their salaries effective for the 2022-2023 school year, surpassing the regional and national averages.
- The Mississippi Flexible Tax Incentive Act is a performance-based incentive program to attract businesses to Mississippi, allowing flexibility in the use of incentives.
- More than $500 million in new funding was appropriated for state and local infrastructure projects.
“Working with Governor Tate Reeves, Lt. Governor Delbert Hosemann, Speaker of the House Philip Gunn, and members of the legislature, we are making great strides in addressing the goals outlined in the ‘Securing Mississippi’s Future’ report,” Waller said. “By bringing public and private sector leaders together to focus on workforce training, economic development, and improving Mississippi’s competitiveness, our state benefits for years to come.”
MEC will celebrate its State Chamber of the Year award at its annual Hobnob Mississippi, which is scheduled for October 27.
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