Public Service Commission Approves Major GTR Natural Gas Expansion for Job Growth
Golden Triangle, Mississippi – Today, Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley announced the approval of $16.7 million in natural gas expansion projects in Lowndes and Oktibbeha Counties to equip two industrial sites with the necessary gas infrastructure to land more jobs for the Golden Triangle region. The projects were approved unanimously by the Public Service Commission for funding on Tuesday. Atmos Energy, the incumbent utility, is set to begin work on the expansions by the end of the year.
“Utility infrastructure is a key to Mississippi’s ability to win the jobs of the future. These expansions will be a great benefit to the Golden Triangle.” said Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley. "I deeply appreciate my fellow Commissioners working with me to get these projects funded."
According to the Mississippi Public Service Commission, funding for the projects comes through a Commission-created economic development tool called the Supplemental Growth Rider (“SGR”). SGR provides incentives for gas companies like Atmos to build out service to industrial areas such as Golden Triangle Park and Starkville Industrial park. The purpose of SGR is to build sufficient gas infrastructure in the state to attract new industry, expand existing industry and create new jobs for Mississippians.
“This program is a ‘win-win’ for everyone involved,” said David Gates, President of the Division of Atmos Energy. “Under the program we will be able to invest millions of dollars in natural gas infrastructure in the Golden Triangle. This will make the area, which is already a desirable location, even more attractive to industry and that will mean more jobs and more economic development to the region.”
Funds will be used to expand gas capacity in the Golden Triangle Industrial Aerospace Park and the proposed Starkville Industrial Park currently under development.
“To be successful in the work we do it takes good partners like Atmos and cooperative utility regulatory offices,” said Joe Max Higgins, CEO of the GTR LINK. “Parker Wiseman demonstrated great initiative in contacting Commissioner Presley to assist us with solving our gas issue. As soon as Presley knew our complicated situation, he took ownership of the problem until a solution was found.”
About The GTR LINK:
The Golden Triangle Development LINK is the regional economic development organization for Clay, Lowndes and Oktibbeha counties. Located in northeast Mississippi, the LINK’s current record of investment totals $5.4 billion and more than 5,800 jobs.
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