The Clarion-Ledger, 12/9/8

While Mississippi officials argued Flora would be the best site for a federal biological laboratory, the Madison County town was ranked third by a panel that instead promoted a Manhattan, Kan., site.

The decision was made largely because the new National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility, which would study animal diseases, could tap Kansas State University’s veterinary and agriculture schools for talent.

“Proximity to research – that’s probably what we emphasized the most,” said Jamie Johnson, director of national laboratories at the Department of Homeland Security.

The Manhattan site is on the Kansas State University campus, but none of the Mississippi schools that could help in the lab’s work is less than two hours away from Flora’s proposed site.