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Mississippi lawmakers open door for $10 billion economic development project

Lawmakers in Mississippi passed a handful of bills on Thursday, opening the door for a $10 billion economic development project in Madison County.

During a special session, members of the House and Senate voted to appropriate $44 million for two hyperscale data center complexes that will make for the largest capital investment in state history. SuperTalk Mississippi News has confirmed that the company is likely Amazon Web Services.

The first phase of the capital investment, titled “Project Atlas,” includes the construction of a facility on 927 acres at the Madison County Mega Site outside of Canton, as well as a 786-acre location at the Costa Site west of Tougaloo College and near County Line Road in Ridgeland.

In all, the project is anticipated to create 1,000 jobs by its completion in 2027, with 800 of the positions being permanent jobs that include an annual salary of $70,000. The remaining 200 jobs will be given to contract employees with salaries of approximately $60,000 annually.

Some lawmakers in the House voiced concerns about whether the long-term duration of the positions at the data centers had been verified, along with jobs that are expected for the construction of a new energy plant by Entergy Mississippi for the data sites.

“I just want to make sure that if we can get figures on the distinction between the actual jobs that will be associated with the data center and if the thousand jobs are just all grouped together with construction jobs, some of them Entergy jobs,” Rep. Earle Banks, D-Hinds, explained.

Despite the pushback, House Bill 1 and House Bill 2 were passed in both chambers before noon, with the legislation appropriating the $44 million for the project’s completion and a $215.1 million loan for improvements to be made to local public infrastructure.

Here’s the breakdown of where the funds will be distributed in the loan commitment:

Roads – $15.7M Water System – $14.8M Sewer System – $171.5M Fire Station – $13.0M

The House voted in approval of Senate Bill 2001 shortly after, allowing for state commitments including a 10-year, 100 percent corporate income

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