The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal, 2/4/9

Gov. Haley Barbour on Tuesday signed legislation providing the incentives promised to Cooper Tire to ensure it did not close its Tupelo plant.

The $19 million package was signed into law during a ceremony in the governor’s state Capitol office attended by Northeast Mississippi legislators, Lee County and Tupelo officials and representatives from Cooper Tire.

“I think this is demonstrative of the commitment state and local officials have to retain the industry we have,” said David Rumbarger, president of the Lee County-based Community Development Foundation.

Had Cooper closed its plant on Green Street, Rumbarger said, it would have meant the loss of $100 million in annual payroll.