Meridian Star

Local News

December 14, 2008

Hosemann proposing business reform laws

Mississippi Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann made a lot of campaign promises about business law reform last year, and now he's trying to follow through on them. He's commissioned studies and prepared a business agenda for next year's Legislature.

"This is a great year to bring business reform because businesses are suffering and employees are losing their jobs," he said.

Hosemann talked with The Meridian Star last week to tell the public what may be in store for business law, as well as what he's been doing to improve the use of 16th Section Lands.

The Meridian Star: So, tell us what's been going on in the Secretary of State's office lately.

Delbert Hosemann: I've got a list. Mississippi has several things that are really critical to continue employment, and that is the actual business laws of the state... The first one is a business court. There are only three states that have business courts — Maine, Delaware, and North Carolina... The cases that would come forth would be all business cases between businesses... The goal is to reduce the cost of litigation to Mississippi businesses and to give timely, consistent opinions. We believe the cost of trial and lawyers and delay is hurting Mississippi businesses, where they're spending money on that versus hiring new employees or funding their health care plan.

Star: So you believe the business court would be an incentive to draw business into Mississippi?

Hosemann: We do. Our main goal, though, is to protect businesses that are here so that they can resolve disputes between themselves at the least possible cost. Under the business court we would have one year between the time of filing and the time a decision would be rendered... This type of process I think will save Mississippi businesses untold amounts of dollars. And now, Mississippi businesses can't get credit from banks. Some of that has to do with outstanding litigation against them. So there are other aspects to this, to allow businesses to be able to resolve their disputes quickly and then continue to get lines of credit is very important.

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