Brad White (above at left), executive director of the Mississippi Department of Transportation, recently interviewed Governor Tate Reeves (R) (above at right) on his agency’s ‘The Extra Mile’ podcast to get insight on critical link between transportation and economic growth.
[Above photo by the Mississippi DOT]
Recorded in the Mississippi governor’s mansion, the podcast touched on everything from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the state’s transportation network to how the state’s multimodal system – water, roads, aviation, etc. – offers competitive economic advantages.
“There are always new issues and new challenges to deal with,” the governor noted. “There are constantly things to be dealt with. Obviously, transportation infrastructure is a critical component for a number of areas in our state. We must ensure we are investing in proper safety on all our highways and roadways. But you do not win large economic development projects unless you have adequate infrastructure to get products to and from the marketplace.”
[Editor’s note: Shortly after his podcast appearance, the governor proposed investing $1.3 billion in transportation capacity project funding coupled to site development efforts to foster the creation of more high-paying jobs from businesses that may locate in Mississippi.]
Gov. Reeves continued emphasized the important link between a strong transportation infrastructure network and economic growth and development throughout the interview.
“Transportation infrastructure opens up new areas to economic growth but has to be updated to handle that growth and the population growth that comes with it,” he said. “You also have safety issues, such as how to get people off the coast quickly in case a hurricane comes up from the Gulf [of Mexico]. Now, it is about how can invest the monies we have collected in the most appropriate way.”