Chamber celebrates 80th annivesary
Published 7:00 am Tuesday, April 19, 2016
For eight decades the Greater Picayune Area Chamber of Commerce has been integral in economic development.
Friday night, chamber members and community members gathered for dinner and a couple of presentations at the Hide-A-Way Lake lodge to commemorate that achievement.
Proceeds from the event’s ticket sales will be donated to an effort to establish an Excel By Five program in the Picayune School District.
One of the night’s presentations involved a special award being given to McDonald Funeral Home for being in business for almost a century, while another came from Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann about his new economic development website Y’all Business. The final presentation involved a quick tour of the Chamber’s new website.
McDonald Funeral Home, a family owned and operated business, has been in business for 99 years, and was recognized for that achievement during Friday’s event. In honor of that accolade, Chamber Director Nuria Arias and Chamber Board President Byron Hill presented McDonald Funeral Home owner Stephen McDonald, his wife Ann McDonald and their two sons, Stephen L. McDonald and Kenneth McDonald with an “Oscar” and a special plaque.
Hosemann said his office’s new website was established as an effort to help him effectively sell Mississippi to national and international businesses.
On the new website, anyone interested in selling Mississippi as a place to relocate or to set up a business can find all kinds of pertinent information, including median income, demographics and retail opportunities, Hosemann said.
This will be especially useful for small businesses, since they are the the economic engine in this state, he said. The site is the result of three years worth of work by 15 different agencies to compile the information.
One of the selling points is the fact that Mississippi is the most tax friendly state to businesses in the United States, Hosemann said.
County officials can use the site to find a plethora of information about their area, such as about healthcare resources and the education system.
“They’re not going to come unless you have a good public school system,” Hosemann said.
After Hosemann’s presentation, the attendees got a sneak peek of the Chamber’s new website. Jason Blocker and his wife Christian put hours into the development of the new site. Jason Blocker gave the attendees a quick tour of the site, which utilizes a simplistic style that works well on mobile devices and tablets. He said 90 percent of the new website can be accessed in three clicks or less. Now each chamber business can have their own page with information about their services, and customers can leave feedback in the form of reviews. Should a user become abusive with the review, there is recourse to rectify the matter, Jason Blocker said.
New chamber members can even register and pay their dues via the new website.
And if a business has job opportunities, they can list them on the website. Geo location while surfing via a mobile device can help visitors find a service closest to their current location quicker and easier.
To visit the new site go to www.greaterpicayunechamber.org.