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May 27, 2008


Backgrounder: National Bio and Agro Defense Facility
Possible impact of location of the NBAF Facility
Flora, Mississippi - Madison County


Governor Haley Barbour today expanded the call for the Special Session of the Mississippi Legislature that is currently under way to include authorization of $88,250,000 in bonds to provide for site improvements at the proposed Flora, Mississippi, site of the National Bio and Agro Defense Facility (NBAF).


NBAF is a new national biological and agricultural research facility proposed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that will provide space to conduct research to protect human health and agriculture from infectious diseases, whether they occur naturally or are deliberately released.


The Flora site was selected for a short list announced in July 2007; a final site selection is anticipated later this year, and Mississippi is in competition with several other states for this proposed project.


Here are additional details:


• Building size 500,000 – 550,000 square feet


• Initial Investment – $450 million


• Construction Jobs – 1,000-1,500


• Direct jobs high-paying research (permanent) – 250-350, including more than 200 scientists as well as technicians and support staff earning salaries that average about $75,000 per year.


• Number of indirect permanent jobs – Estimated 400-1,000

• Salaries for direct jobs over 20 years – $550 million


• Economic impact over 20 years – $3.5 billion


• NBAF will provide the nation with integrated research and response capabilities to protect animal and public health. The center would have the nation’s highest Biosafety Level 4 (BL-4) designation, which is one currently held by the Centers for Disease Control in downtown Atlanta.


• Large percentage of workforce will be Ph.D.-level researchers.


• High-paying and sustainable economic development.

• This facility will be one of the largest federal research facilities in the country.


• NBAF will enhance Mississippi and central Mississippi as a place to locate biomedical and biotechnology-related firms. NBAF will also collaborate and work synergistically with local assets, including The University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson State University, Tougaloo College, and other state IHL universities. The project has gained full endorsements from the Mississippi Cattlemen’s Association, Mississippi Pork Producers, Mississippi Poultry Association, and the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce.