The Clarion-Ledger, 3/24/8

A group of more than 35 business leaders and state officials met today to begin the process of studying Mississippi’s tax structure.

The members, appointed by Gov. Haley Barbour in January, were briefed this morning on the state’s revenue sources.

Meetings will be held once every three to four weeks, said the group’s leader, former Mississippi Development Authority director Leland Speed.

The first couple will be purely “informational,” he said. “We need to understand our state’s economy before we can do a good job figuring out how to tax in order to pay the bills.”

An initial report is due from the group by August. Barbour said he hoped the group would focus on how to keep the state most economically viable even in light of the dwindling national economy.