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‘Our’ day at capitol is Thursday

Chamber of commerce officials are finalizing plans to putBrookhaven and Lincoln County in the spotlight next Thursday duringBrookhaven Day at the Capitol activities.

“We’re grateful to get the opportunity to express the needs forthe community and what we’ve targeted for projects in the comingyears,” said Kenny Goza, 2004 chamber president.

As in years past, the chamber of commerce will host a buffetlunch for lawmakers at the University Club. Chandler Russ,executive vice-president, is expecting a good turnout.

“We’ve already received a lot of RSVPs from members of the Houseand the Senate,” Russ said. “We’re expecting most of the leadershipto be there.”

The theme of the event is “Putting the Pieces Together.” Russsaid plans are to provide special Rubik’s cubes promotingBrookhaven and the chamber to lawmakers during their visit.

Goza will welcome lawmakers and Third Dist. U.S. Rep. ChipPickering is scheduled to speak about Brookhaven and workingtogether to improve the community and state, Russ said. MississippiSchool of the Arts Executive Director Dr. Vicki Bodenhamer willupdate lawmakers on school progress.

“We have also got a presentation on Brookhaven and LincolnCounty,” Russ said. “It’s an abbreviated version of what we did atthe annual banquet.”

Arts school efforts will again be a primary focus of BrookhavenDay activities. Russ said MSA students’ artwork will be on displaynext Thursday in the capitol rotunda, and school officials areworking out plans to have students sing in the House and Senatechambers.

“Our number one priority is to make sure the arts school getsthe necessary funding for them to fulfill the mandate of thelegislature,” Russ said.

While the arts school will be a primary topic, Russ said thefocus of Brookhaven Day will also start to shift to some otherimportant areas.. He mentioned seeking assistance with a newindustrial park and infrastructure, roads and bridges, water andsewer projects and continuing tort reform measures to improve thestate’s legal climate.

“It’s a whole host of other items for which there is an urgentneed,” Russ said.

Russ said Brookhaven Day is being sponsored by the Bank ofBrookhaven, Trustmark, State Bank, Specialty Minerals Inc., Entergyand Engineering Associates. Goza was optimistic that 2004Brookhaven Day activities will be as successful and previous years’efforts.

“It’s shown in the past that Brookhaven Day has been beneficialto us,” Goza said.