City Grill

Bob Wilson

Bob Wilson 
Executive Director
AGC Mississippi

The construction industry in Mississippi is “in good shape,” Wilson says. In Jackson, ongoing projects include the $30-million mixed-use development in Fondren, the city’s arts district, and the $180-million Pediatric Tower Expansion at the Blair E. Batson Children’s Hospital. The Jackson area, however, is “sort of flat now, but some good news is on the horizon,” he says.

Approximately $2 billion of the 2021 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act is directed toward Mississippi, with about $700 million slated for roads, wastewater and bridges, Wilson says. These dollars are critical: The infrastructure is “crumbling” in the Jackson area, with a specific need for a possible $1-billion revamp of the wastewater treatment system.

Political leaders, however, are considering eliminating or reducing the state income tax to spur investment and setting the priorities for allocating federal and state funds. “Successful areas are so because everyone works together—the state legislatures with cities and counties,” Wilson says. “But in our metro Jackson area, for instance, city leaders are at odds with county supervisors. They have to get those funds moving.”