FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, July 18, 2005

GOVERNOR HALEY BARBOUR ATTENDS
NATIONAL GOVERNOR’S MEETING

Conference Bound for Biloxi in 2006

(Jackson, Miss.) – Governor Barbour joined the nation’s governors in Des Moines, Iowa, as they gathered for the 97th Annual National Governors Association (NGA) meeting to discuss national energy policy, recruiting and retaining teachers, overhauling America’s high schools, and healthcare reform.

At last year’s annual meeting, Governor Barbour was selected to serve as vice chairman of the Health and Human Services Committee. Yesterday he spoke to the committee on such topics as reducing the rising costs of both private and public health insurance, improving the quality of health care in the country, and increasing coverage and access for uninsured Americans.

“Unfortunately, there are over 45 million people lacking effective health insurance in the United States today and for many who do have insurance, the quality of their health care needs to be improved,” Governor Barbour said. “Our meeting in Des Moines allowed governors to discuss this important issue and map out potential solutions.”

Not only was Governor Barbour a key voice in talks to reform the nation’s health care system, he also had the opportunity to brief fellow governors about next year’s meeting to be held in Biloxi, Mississippi.

“It is a high honor for Mississippi to have been chosen as the site for this prestigious meeting,” Governor Barbour said. “Governors from across the nation and media from around the world will be in attendance, and we will make the most of this opportunity to showcase Mississippi. It has been 69 years since the nation’s governors have been to Mississippi and we are eager to show them the multitude of exciting things happening in our state.”

About 1,200 people attend NGA’s Annual Meeting each year. Attendees include the Governors, their spouses and families, Governors’ staff and other representatives from state government, representatives of federal government agencies, the White House, private-sector and business representatives, and approximately 300 members of the national, regional and local news media. Additional invitees include people from the host state government and private sector identified by the host governor as having an interest in the issues the Governors are addressing.

Governor Barbour’s Office and the Mississippi Development Authority’s (MDA) Division of Tourism have formed a host committee that will work with the NGA and hotel and facility representatives on the Gulf Coast to plan for next year’s event. The MDA says the event should provide an economic boost to the entire Mississippi Gulf Coast.

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Governor Haley Barbour
P.O. Box 139 Jackson, MS 39205
Phone: 601.359.3150 Fax: 601.359.3741